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How Does Your Local Hospital Rate for Patient Care and Safety?


Hospitals Rated.jpgRate My Hospital, a project by the CBC's the fifth estate,investigated hospitals in Canada. Almost 240 acute-care hospitals across the country were graded, providing insight into how Canadian hospitals are performing. This is the first time this information is available to the public in Canada. 

Although hospitals gather huge amounts of patient data and report it to provincial health authorities, most of these statistics on performance are located in little-known databases and are designed for administrators and policy makers. Patients wanting to find information about hospitals rarely have resources beyond their doctor's recommendation. Rate My Hospital's goal is to change that by helping the Canadian public to understand a hospital's possible strengths and weaknesses so they can ask informed questions regarding their care. Rate My Hospital is also a call for greater accountability and transparency in our health care system.

The ratings are based on information supplied by hospitals and reported by the Canadian Institute for Health Information. The report also includes information on initiatives to improve quality and safety, data on emergency room wait time and rate of hospital-acquired infections, as well as patient reviews from Canadians who have recently been hospitalized. The methodology underlying the report was developed with the help of a panel of experts who are leaders in assessing hospital quality and performance.

The report paints a picture of how well a hospital performs in areas such as safe and effective surgery, nursing care, and preparation of patients for discharge from hospital. However, it is noted that the report is not a measure of everything a hospital does, nor do the ratings provide medical advice or recommendations. A poor grade does not imply that quality care cannot be provided at a hospital, nor does a good grade guarantee that patients will not encounter problems. Those behind the project state that ultimately, Rate My Hospital's goal was to inspire discussion, and allow members of the public to arm themselves with the information they need when preparing for a hospital stay.

For more information about the project, and to see how your hospital rated, click on the link below:

http://www.cbc.ca/news2/health/features/ratemyhospital/hospitalratings.html

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