OHA: Measuring hospital performance

Oregon’s hospitals are focusing on improving patient safety and the quality of care they provide, according to the second annual report of the Oregon Health Authority’s Hospital Transformation Performance Program.

The report covers the program’s second year, October 2014 through September 2015. The Oregon Health Authority (OHA) requires hospitals to submit data on 11 measures or “metrics” that include goals such as reducing healthcare-associated infections, reducing readmissions of patients after discharge, improving medication safety, improving overall patient experience, and screening for alcohol and substance use. 

“This report gives OHA insights into how Oregon’s hospitals are performing on key measures,” said Lynne Saxton, OHA Director. “It is also an important element of our commitment to increased transparency and accountability as we continue to make progress toward better health, better care, and lower costs for all Oregonians.”

The health authority’s Hospital Metrics Advisory Committee developed the measures in coordination with the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The 11 measures cover six areas, including two that focus on collaboration between hospitals and coordinated care organizations (sharing information about emergency department visits with primary care providers, and behavioral health).  Hospitals are scored on whether they meet benchmarks or make progress toward them as measured against baselines set in the latest performance year.

This year $150 million in quality pool dollars, funded by 1 percent of the hospital assessment, is awarded to hospitals based on their performance on these measures. 

The quality pool funds are paid in two phases. Each participating hospital can receive a lump sum of $500,000 by achieving at least 75 percent of the measures for which it is eligible. This year three received this payment: Adventist Medical Center and Shriners Hospital for Children, both in Portland, and Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center in Corvallis. 

The second phase of the quality pool payments is in the form of proportional awards to hospitals for meeting the individual benchmarks or making progress toward them. All 28 participating hospitals received some payment, ranging from $166,000 for Kaiser Westside (Portland) to $21.8 million for Adventist; hospital payments vary by size and payments are weighted based on the number of Medicaid discharges and inpatient days. 

The program covers the state’s “DRG” hospitals. Those are hospitals that are paid per patient by the state Medicaid program based on a patient’s diagnosis or diagnosis-related group (DRG) rather than for every service performed. 

The full report is available on the OHA website at http://www.oregon.gov/oha/Metrics/Pages/Hospital-Reports.aspx

More information about the Hospital Transformation Performance Program is available athttp://www.oregon.gov/oha/analytics/Pages/Hospital-Baseline-Data.aspx, or by contacting Jon Collins, PhD, director of the OHA Office of Health Analytics, at 503-945-6429 or [email protected].