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Research Letter
June 10, 2019

Comparison of Services Available in 5-Star and Non–5-Star Patient Experience Hospitals

Author Affiliations
  • 1Department of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Johns Hopkins Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland
  • 2Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality, Johns Hopkins Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland
  • 3Department of Health Policy and Management, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland
JAMA Intern Med. Published online June 10, 2019. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2019.1285

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services publicly report star ratings for hospitals based on their patient experience performance on the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Provider and Systems (HCAHPS) survey.1 The agency’s objective is to make information about hospital quality understandable for patients. However, the hospital star rating system may not be intuitive or aid consumer choice. In the hotel industry, higher star ratings are associated with provision of a broader set of services.2 It is unknown whether a similar association exists between hospital star ratings and range of services available. We compared the structural characteristics and clinical services provided by hospitals that received 5-star patient experience ratings with those that did not. We also determined the proportion of hospitals ranked by US News & World Report in the top 5% for each state, which is a commonly understood consumer-based metric for hospital quality.3

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