Application2

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Application: Are All Facilities Created Equal?

One of the fundamental functions of health care policy is to improve the overall quality of care that is delivered in hospitals and long-term care facilities. Assuring that every institution and individual health care provider offers the best possible care can be a challenge, as the definition of “quality” can vary greatly among regions, facilities, and providers.

In 2001, the Committee on Quality of Health Care in America at the Institute of Medicine released its landmark report Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for the 21st Century. (US Institute of Medicine, 2001). The report called for nothing less than a complete overhaul of the health care delivery system in the United States.

Four major areas of health care delivery were identified and reviewed: the patient experience; the functioning of health care delivery teams; the functioning of the larger organizations within which the health care delivery teams operate; and the environment in which the organizations operate.

Several organizations have attempted to help better understand the “quality chasm” by developing tools for assessing the relative quality of institutions and their services. These tools are built on standards of care and performance benchmarks allowing for a balanced comparison across facilities and regions.

To prepare for this Application, select an organization that compares acute and long-term care facilities from the list provided. Then, select at least two hospitals or long-term care facilities in your own region to compare.

HealthGrades
http://www.healthgrades.com

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: Hospital Compare
http://www.hospitalcompare.hhs.gov/hospital-search.aspx?AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

The Leapfrog Group
http://www.leapfroggroup.org

UCompareHealthCare.com
http://www.ucomparehealthcare.com/

To complete this Application, write a 3- to 4-page paper that addresses the following:

  • Select at least two hospitals or long-term care facilities in your own region. Identify and describe the facilities that you selected, including: the type of facility, the locations, the size (number of beds), the facilities’ affiliation (independent or part of a health system), and the facilities’ area of specialty (if any).

  • Select four indicators (also known as “measures”) from one or more of the websites provided in the Learning Resources that pertain to the facilities you selected above. Define those four indicators (for example: pressure sores or bed sores acquired in the hospital). Compare and contrast those indicators for the facilities you have selected.

  • Make an argument for the facility you would choose, if you or a family member needed care from a facility. Be sure to clearly explain the reasons for your choice.

Your written assignments must follow APA guidelines. Be sure to support your work with specific citations from this week’s Learning Resources and additional scholarly sources, as appropriate. Refer to the Essential Guide to APA Style for Walden Students to ensure your in-text citations and reference list are correct.

Learning Resources

Required Resources

Readings

  • Course Text: Current Issues in Healthcare Policy and Practice
    • Chapter 1, “Inpatient Facilities and Services”

      Hospitals have evolved significantly over the years to offer a wide breadth of services. This chapter offers an introduction to the inpatient acute-care centers.

  • Book Chapter: Gourevitch, M., Caronna, C., & Kalkut, G. (2008). Acute Care. In Kovner, A. R., Knickman, J. & Jonas, S. (Ed.). Jonas and Kovner’s health care delivery in the United States. (pp. 191-218). New York, NY: Springer Publishing.
    Please see Doc Sharing section of the class to access the PDF.

Websites

  • HealthGrades
    http://www.healthgrades.com

    HeathGrades is a for-profit health care rating organization that provides ratings for doctors, hospitals, and nursing homes.

  • U.S. Department of Health & Human Services: Hospital Compare
    http://www.medicare.gov/hospitalcompare/

    Hospital Compare is designed and maintained by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services to help consumers make informed decision by providing them with comparison information on hospital processes and outcome of care measures, as well as the results of patient-experience surveys.

  • The Leapfrog Group
    http://www.leapfroggroup.org

    LeapFrog Group is a voluntary program that provides performance data to provide transparency and improve performance at its member hospitals.

  • UCompareHealthCare.com
    http://www.ucomparehealthcare.com/

    UCompareHealthCare.com is a for-profit entity that allows consumers to compare performance indicators for doctors, nursing homes, and hospitals at no charge.

Optional Resources

Readings

 

  • Text: Institute of Medicine. (2001). Crossing the quality chasm: A new health system for the 21st century. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.
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