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Second Opinion

Learn about policy issues important to medical schools and teaching hospitals, with Executive Vice President Atul Grover, M.D., Ph.D.

Washington Highlights

AAMC Applauds Bill Aimed At Addressing Flawed Hospital Ratings

September 23, 2016—Reps. Jim Renacci (R-Ohio) and Kathleen Rice (D-N.Y.) introduced the Hospital Quality Rating Transparency Act of 2016 (H.R. 6088), bipartisan legislation that would delay release of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) Hospital Compare Star Ratings to give CMS and stakeholders time to work together to address concerns with the methodology. Currently, Star Ratings do not take into account important differences in the patient populations and the complexity of conditions that teaching hospitals treat [see Washington Highlights, April 22].

AAMC President and CEO Darrell G. Kirch, MD, applauded the introduction stating, “Patients need accurate and reliable information in order to make decisions about their health care. The current proposed methodology for the Hospital Compare Star Ratings does not provide this, but rather may mislead patients into making poor decisions about hospitals.”

In related Star Ratings activity, Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) Chairman Francis J. Crosson, MD, sent a September 22 letter to CMS Acting Administrator Andy Slavitt expressing concern “that the current Hospital Star Rating program may not fully account for differences in the intrinsic health risks that patients bring to the hospitals, and therefore may not produce a true “apples-to-apples” comparison of hospitals.” It further encourages “the use of outcome over process measures to assess provider quality” and states concern that there “are currently too many, overlapping hospital quality payment and reporting programs, which creates unneeded complexity in the Medicare program.”

Contact:

Len Marquez
Director, Government Relations
Telephone: 202-862-6281
Email: lmarquez@aamc.org

Courtney Summers
Senior Legislative Analyst
Telephone: 202-862-6042
Email: csummers@aamc.org

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Washington Highlights, a weekly electronic newsletter, features brief updates on the latest legislative and regulatory activities affecting medical schools and teaching hospitals.


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For More Information

Jason Kleinman
Sr. Legislative Analyst, Govt. Relations
Telephone: 202-903-0806
Email: jkleinman@aamc.org