St. Mark's Hospital January 14, 2014

Salt Lake City, UT – St. Mark’s Hospital achieved readmission rates better than the national average according to data recently released from Medicare. Only seven percent of hospitals across the country, and only six in Utah, are included in this notable group.

Since 2008, Medicare has been tracking hospital readmission rates and publishing those associated with three common ailments. However, in December, the government expanded its disclosure to include readmission rates of Medicare patients of all diagnoses who returned within a month for unplanned reasons from July 2011 through June 2012.

Patients at 315 hospitals, or seven percent of those rated across the country, were readmitted at a lower rate than the national average. St. Mark’s Hospital was one of only six hospitals in Utah and the only MountainStar facility to achieve better than the nation’s average results on this measure. Eight percent of hospitals performed worse than average, and the rest of the nation’s hospitals were rated as average.

The measure, known as the Hospital-Wide All-Cause Unplanned Readmission (HWR) Measure, estimates a risk-standardized readmission rate (RSRR) based on unplanned readmissions to any acute care hospital, for any cause, within 30 days of discharge. The measure adjusts for each hospital’s case mix (patient age and comorbidities), so that hospitals that care for older, sicker patients are on a “level playing field” with hospitals serving healthier patients.

Endorsed by the National Quality Forum, the HWR Measure was developed by a team of clinical and statistical experts from Yale New Haven Health Services Corporation – Center for Outcomes Research and Evaluation. Hospitals included in the measure include all non-federal, short-stay acute care hospitals and critical access hospitals.