She added that her company provides survey services to comply with Medicare requirements for 44% of the nation's hospitals, which amounts to about 65% of discharges in the country. Press Ganey decided to take the extra step to give hospitals and the public some sense of how patients are responding to extra efforts hospital teams are making. Each of their client hospitals is receiving its own scores, with comparison tables for their regional, state or national competitors.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid also provides this information in public reports, but that data is delayed, with the most recent HCAHPS survey responses posted a week ago covering the period April 1, 2010 to March 31, 2011, now about one year old. "We have an opportunity to look at this robust sample of 44% of hospitals, to see what's really going on now in the industry as opposed to a year in hindsight," Mylod says.
Additionally, Press Ganey compared responses to that same question for discharges between April, 2010 to March 2011 survey responses from discharges July 1 to October 31, 2011. The improvement was even better—0.9%—or nine additional patients out of 1,000 giving the hospital a high score of 9 or 10.
Using a different question, one hospitals like to review, but which is not part of the HCAHPS survey used for VBP scoring—"How likely would you be to recommend this hospital to others?"—also showed improvement.Ofpatients discharged between July and October, 1.5% more would "definitely recommend" compared with the period April 2010 to March 2011.