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April 14, 2011

CareChex is a nationally recognized medical quality rating service of The Delta Group — the nation’s largest privately-held healthcare information service company. CareChex provides clinical, financial, and patient satisfaction findings to consumers, providers, and purchasers of U.S. medical care. Unlike other publicly available hospital quality ratings, CareChex provides a comprehensive evaluation of all components of medical quality including processes of care, outcomes of care, and patient experiences.
The CareChex medical quality rating system is designed to assist hospitals in improving the quality of inpatient care and promoting medical excellence to consumers, payers, and employers. Relying on both public and proprietary measures of performance, CareChex compares the quality of hospital and physician care to national, state, and local standards using a variety of process, outcome, and patient satisfaction measures to assign a composite quality score and rating. The Delta Group’s National Quality Rating Database (NQRD) includes virtually all general, acute, non-federal U.S. hospitals. The database incorporates the most recent three (3) years of federal fiscal year data. The NQRD includes information from the following publicly available datasets:

  • Hospital Quality Alliance (HQA) Hospital Compare Database (All-Payer)
  • Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)
  • Medicare Provider Assessment and Review (MedPAR) File

In order to provide a valid and reliable comparison of quality performance across providers, The Delta Group utilizes a number of statistical methods to calculate percentile scores for each quality measure, quality measurement category, and clinical category. Every hospital’s performance for each quality measure are evaluated within the following quality measurement categories:

  • Mortality Overall
  • Complications Overall
  • Inpatient Quality
  • Core Process
  • Patient Safety
  • Patient Satisfaction

This approach produces normally-distributed statistically significant percentiles of performance for accurately and uniformly assessing the quality of hospital care and assigning composite scoring and ratings. Using Table 1 below, each hospital’s quality rating is determined by assigning its respective percentile score to the appropriate percentile reference range and identifying the associated quality rating (√++ through √–).

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