When relocating to a new community, the quality of medical care is often an important consideration. Hospitals are an important factor, especially for families with young children or for older individuals. Thankfully, to assist you there are several organizations which publish the standings of hospitals online. Please note: the organizations which maintain these sites are continually evaluating hospitals, so the rank of an institution will probably fluctuate up and down over time.
The Hospital Safety Score site is sponsored by The Leapfrog Group, an independent not-for-profit organization that was founded by some of the country’s leading employers and private healthcare experts over a decade ago. They try to promote quality care by promoting transparency and value-based hospital incentives. The Hospital Safety Score rates medical facilities by evaluating 26 factors of patient care. The website tabulates scores like a report card, rating hospitals from A (best) to F (worst). The site has a section explaining how the score was determined and how potential patients should use it. At the time this blog was published Portsmouth Regional was rated “A,” Southern New Hampshire Medical Center and St. Joseph’s Hospital in Nashua, Catholic Medical Center in Manchester, Parkland in Derry, and Exeter were rated “B,” and Elliot in Manchester and Cheshire Medical Center in Keene were rated “C.” For details, go to this site and click on the hospital’s listing.
HealthInsight’s “National Rankings for Hospital” tabulates its rankings from hospital care in four areas: heart attack, heart failure, pneumonia, and surgical care. It covers over 4,500 institutions, many more than The Leapfrog Group’s site. To check on their rankings, click here.
Medicare.com, the official U.S. government website for Medicare, includes a “Hospital Compare” webpage feature which can be used to find all the hospitals within 50 miles of a town and then allows you to compare them with each other. To use their hospital compare feature, click here.
U. S. News’s list of the best hospitals in the country is on US News’s health website. They have identified three New Hampshire hospitals as meeting their criteria for strong performance within the state (in Concord, Dartmouth, and Dover); they are listed on the “Best Hospitals in New Hampshire” page. U. S. News selected several Massachusetts hospitals as among the best in the country; they can be accessed by clicking here.
Consumer Reports has a hospital rankings site, but it is only accessible to subscribers of Consumer Reports Online.
And lastly, this is a link to a USA Today article that discusses some of the most popular hospital ranking systems and explains why a hospital may rank differently in each one; it counsels that potential patients shouldn’t pick a hospital solely on its standing in one of the rating systems.
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– Steve Russo, Connecting People with Homes in Southern New Hampshire and North Central Massachusetts.
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