State publishes first report on quality of clinics, hospitalsby Lorna Benson, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — The Minnesota Department of Health published its first statewide quality report Thursday on the performance of hundreds of clinics and hospitals.
The report is a requirement of state health reform legislation passed in 2008.
It includes comparisons for diabetes and vascular care, infection prevention and several other common health care conditions from sore throats to pneumonia and hip fractures.
Health Department manager Katie Burns said it's hard to generalize about how clinics and hospitals fared.
"One of the things we can say is that there are differences in quality across providers," she said. "And I think that's one of the primary messages that we want both consumers and providers to be aware of."
Next year the department plans to release additional information on how doctors perform on these measures in group practice or clinic settings. Future reports will also include comparisons on treatment costs.
The report includes performance data from 520 clinics and 132 hospitals.
Burns said the information should help patients make more informed decisions about where to seek care.
"Quality differences do exist," she said. "And it's helpful to get that information out into the community, both so providers can better understand information about their own quality performance and so that consumers have access to that information."