Misinterpretation of safety ratings
The Opinion Column in the Weekend Edition (April 4, 2014) of the Gazette featured Mike Hendricks commenting about "Surviving your hospital stay". In his column, he stated "Many hospitals in Nebraska have not yet been given an overall safety score and Community Hospital in McCook is one of those that hasn't, although it does get a negative rating for readmissions, defined as a patient being readmitted to the hospital within 30 days of initial discharge." Mr Hendricks was citing the May edition of Consumer Reports Magazine which featured several articles related to hospital safety.
We would like to correct Mr Hendrick's interpretation of the rating given to Community Hospital related to readmissions. We actually received a Consumer Reports rating of 4 on a 1-5 scale, where the higher number is reflective of better performance.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) provides hospital performance data on its website Hospital Compare.
On that website, the consumer can see that our readmission rate is no different than the rest of the reporting hospitals in the United States. Hospitals across the country, including ours, are looking at our data and learning about new ways to improve the quality, safety, and efficiency of the care we provide.
Thank you for the opportunity to discuss, although briefly, this topic of hospital safety.