Jordan Rau’s stories have been published in The New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, Philadelphia Inquirer, Politico, and on npr.org and nbcnews.com, among other media outlets. He came to KHN when it was started in 2009 from the Los Angeles Times, where he covered California government and health care politics in Sacramento. He previously reported for Newsday in New York, the Concord Monitor in New Hampshire and two newspapers in Vermont. | Contact: JordanR@kff.org | @JordanRau
Each year about 75,000 patients die from infections they caught in the hospital. A KHN analysis of federal data shows that nearly 700 hospitals have higher than expected rates of infection for at least one condition.
An investigation by the HHS inspector general says beneficiaries getting the treatments at “critical access” hospitals pay between two and six times more than those at other hospitals.
Although fewer patients are now returning to the hospital within a month, the fines reached a record level this year.
The methodology behind KHN’s analysis of the third year of the Medicare penalty program.
A quarter of the nation's hospitals are exempt from penalties, quality bonuses and other payment reforms.
BlueCross BlueShield’s near dominance and hospitals’ lack of negotiating clout are key reasons Chattanooga has among the lowest priced coverage in the nation.
Chattanooga’s success in achieving bargain-priced policies offers valuable lessons for other parts of the country as they seek to satisfy consumers with insurance networks that limit their choices of doctors and hospitals.
The 1 percent cut in payments is the latest effort by the federal government to improve hospital care.
Before assessing penalties, Medicare assesses rates of infection among patients with catheters in major veins and in the bladder and eight other patient injuries, such as blood clots, bed sores and accidental falls.
Readmissions and patient injuries decrease as new government programs take effect.