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November 19, 2009

State Public Health Director Announces Launch of Hospital Report Card and Consumer Guide to Health Care Web Site
Information to help make better decisions about health care providers

SPRINGFIELD – In a move to provide more information to Illinoisans trying to decide where to receive medical care, Illinois Department of Public Health Director Dr. Damon T. Arnold today announced the launch of the Hospital Report Card and Consumer Guide to Health Care Web site.  The Hospital Report Card Act requires all Illinois hospitals to report nurse staffing, infection prevention measures and hospital acquired infections data to the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH).  The Consumer Guide to Health Care contains information from hospitals and ambulatory surgical treatment centers about conditions and procedures demonstrating the widest variation in charges and quality of care.  The Web site will include inpatient and outpatient data with current comparison information related to volume of cases, average charges, mortality rates, complications and hospital associated infections.   

“To help Illinoisans make better decisions about their choice of hospital or health care provider, they need information about the quality of care offered by these facilities.  The Hospital Report Card and Consumer Guide to Health Care Web site will allow consumers to find average costs for specific medical procedures, nurse staffing levels at hospitals and general quality of care information,” said Dr. Arnold.

The Department will continue to update the Web site as IDPH compiles new information and adds additional features.  The site also offers hospitals and surgical treatment centers the opportunity to identify quality and safety improvements by comparing information with other facilities.

“As the two co-sponsors of the legislation which created this Web site, then Senator Barack Obama and I were thinking ahead to the need for promoting quality healthcare and reduced medical costs—two of the principles of the current national healthcare reform initiative,” said State Representative Julie Hamos.

The Illinois Department of Public Health's Division of Patient Safety and Quality promotes health care transparency and is responsible for developing and implementing programs to collect and report health care provider data for improving the quality and value of health care services delivered to Illinois residents.

Access to the Hospital Report Card and Consumer Guide to Health Care can be found at www.idph.state.il.us or www.healthcarereportcard.illinois.gov.



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