When You Need Hospital CareHospitals can be so different – one may give better care for some conditions than others. You want to know when hospitals provide good care, but how can you find out?
Sometimes, you don’t have time to research every decision. The unexpected happens and you must choose a hospital quickly. Some hospitals may not meet your medical needs or accept your insurance. Your doctor may not practice at every hospital in your area. Or your choices may be limited.
Take a few minutes now to prepare. Use the information on Hospital Compare to learn all you can about quality of care at hospitals in your area and talk with your doctor before an emergency arises.
Learning About Hospital QualityQuality care means you get the right medicine, treatment or test at the right time for your condition. Getting quality care means you may recover more quickly and avoid other medical problems. It’s important to know that hospitals vary in the quality of care they provide and you may be able to use this information to choose a hospital when you need one.
Hospital Compare is a Web site available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It is an easy-to-use resource that can show you how well participating hospitals take care of their patients with certain conditions.
Talk to your doctor and health care providers, as well as friends and family, about:
- Hospital quality. Some hospitals have more experience or better results treating certain conditions. Find out which hospital provides the best care for the condition you are concerned about. If your doctor shows a strong preference for a certain hospital, ask why.
- Their experiences with the hospital.
- The information you find on Hospital Compare. Your health provider may be able to answer any questions or concerns you have.
How Well Does Your Hospital Provide Quality Care?These questions may help you think about your hospital’s quality:
- How does the hospital compare with others in my area?
- Is this a hospital where my doctor can treat patients?
- How well does staff at this hospital treat people with my health problem?
- Does the hospital meet national quality standards?
- Does staff at this hospital treat a lot of people with my health problem?
- How often is the procedure I need done at this hospital?
Hospital and Patient Safety Materials and ToolsClick here for a list of materials and tools.