“We’ve taken a conservative approach, erring on the side that patients are well taken care of and have a good transition plan, all the necessary pieces in place — discharge instructions, home care instructions, follow-up, transportation.”
As a result, Munson tends to keep patients longer, but doesn’t necessarily get paid for the time, which impacts the bottom line. The hospital will focus on greater efficiency without compromising patients’ well-being, he said.
“Patients often want to get home as well,” Pilong said. “They want don’t want to be in the hospital any longer than they need to be.”
Truven Health Analytics provides a range of services to most of the country’s hospitals. Munson Medical Center, for example, pays the company $123,000 a year for a subscription to their data service. This service is completely unrelated to the “100 Top Hospitals” ranking.
Still, Chenowith said she is often asked whether Truven can objectively assess hospitals that are also clients. She said the study design and transparency ensure complete objectivity.
“Number one, this study is done in the research division. Number two, we use only public data sources, “ she said.
Truven’s reports from the study are intended for use by hospitals, not consumers, she said.
“We publish the names of the winners primarily so non-winners can call them and say, “What are you doing?’”