The quality of hospital care in the US needs significant improvement with only half achieving acceptable standards for mortality, according to a new survey.
The study by the Leapfrog group showed that although standards were improving, waste remains rampant.
Of the 1,244 hospitals surveyed, 53.5% met Leapfrog’s quality standard for heart bypass surgery in 2009, compared to only 43% in 2008.
In 2009 44% of hospitals met Leapfrog’s quality standard for heart angioplasty, compared to only 35% in 2008.
Waste management is identified as a significant problem, with a 56% difference between the highest and lowest performing hospitals in 2009 in terms of resources used for heart bypass surgery and for heart angioplasty, with a 79% difference between the highest and lowest performers.
The differences in resource utilisation among hospitals performing the same type of surgery highlight the opportunities that exist for significantly cutting the costs of care.
The survey was released at the World Health Congress in Washington, DC.