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May 19, 2015

Hospital Quality Reporting by US News & World Report: Why, How, and What's Ahead

Author Affiliations
  • 1US News & World Report, Washington, DC
JAMA. 2015;313(19):1903-1904. doi:10.1001/jama.2015.4566

Clinically significant variation exists in the quality of care delivered in US hospitals. To make informed choices among hospitals, as well as among health systems and insurance networks of which they are a part, the public must have access to meaningful data that facilitate actionable comparisons. For 25 years, US News & World Report has published indices of hospital quality with the objective of providing health care consumers with highly intuitive decision support. Using methods1,2 based on the Donabedian model of structure, process, and outcomes, US News annually ranks hospitals in 16 adult and 10 pediatric specialties. The explicit focus of these rankings is high-acuity care, which is often delivered in the context of tertiary or quaternary referral. The rankings are not designed for use by patients in need of typical inpatient care.