Medicare Gives Hazel Hawkins 2 stars

Hazel Hawkins

New federal quality ratings for U.S. hospitals place Hazel Hawkins Memorial Hospital tn the second-lowest category—with a two-star rating—which means that approximately 72 percent of U.S. hospitals had higher quality ratings than the Hollister hospital in the national report.

A spokesperson for the Hollister hospital cautioned against drawing too many conclusions from the one rating. “There are dozens of survey models in the United States and this Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services rating is just one of them,” said spokesperson Frankie Gallagher, in response to the new ratings.

She noted that Hazel Hawkins Memorial Hospital received an “A” rating from the Leapfrog group in November 2018 for patient safety and the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems satisfaction scores gave the hospital a 96-out-of-100 overall rating.

Gallagher also said the obstetrics department at Hazel Hawkins has received top awards for seven years, and both Mabie Skilled Nursing facilities received five-star ratings.

The ratings for U.S. hospitals released this month also place two of the three hospitals in the newly expanded Santa Clara County Health System in the lowest category—a one-star rating—which represents the bottom 7.5 percent of more than 3,725 hospitals.

The U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services updated its Overall Hospital Quality Star Ratings in February, and gave Santa Clara Valley Medical Center and O’Connor Hospital in San Jose and 280 other U.S. hospitals the lowest quality rating.

The third hospital in the Santa Clara County system, St. Louise Regional Hospital in Gilroy received a three-star rating, the most common rating in the CMS report. Less than 40 percent of U.S. hospitals scored higher in the Medicare quality report than St. Louise.

CMS’ Hospital Compare website, reports on quality measures for more than 3,725 hospitals nationwide.

The new star ratings come eight months after CMS postponed its July 2018 update for the second consecutive year due to methodology changes. The updated methodology includes removal of measures with statistically negative loadings and a change to how hospital-acquired infection measures are calculated. Childrens’ Hospitals and Veterans’ hospitals were not included in the rankings.

The federal agency gathers information about the quality of care at over 4,000 Medicare-certified hospitals, including over 130 Veterans Administration medical centers, across the country. Medicare consumers can use the Hospital Compare website to find hospitals and compare the quality of their care.

The ratings are based on data from answers to more than 135 questions, on patient care, hospital communications and payments, from patients and from hospital records 2015-17 in these areas:

  • Mortality
  • Safety of care
  • Readmission
  • Patient Experience
  • Effectiveness of Care
  • Timeliness of Care
  • Efficient Use of Medical Imaging

The federal government website is managed and paid for by the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

The new ratings for other Bay Area hospitals include:

  • Regional Medical Center of San Jose, one star Good Samaritan Hospital, Watsonville Community Hospital, two stars
  • Dominican Hospital, Natividad Medical Center, three stars
  • El Camino Hospital, Kaiser/ San Jose, Kaiser/Santa Clara, Stanford Health Care, four stars
  • Community Hospital of Monterey, Sutter Maternity and Surgery, five stars.

Hospital Compare was created through the efforts of Medicare and the Hospital Quality Alliance (HQA). The HQA: Improving Care Through Information was created in December 2002. The HQA was a public-private collaboration established inDecember 2002 to promote reporting on hospital quality of care.

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