Washington Medicare Patients Returning to Hospitals After Treatment
36 hospitals in the State of Washington were fined this year due to high readmission rates of Medicare patients, according to data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). This an increase since last year, when 34 Washington hospitals received a fine.
The fine is a percentage (maximum of 3%) of payment for every Medicare patient they see from Oct. 1 of this year until Sept. 30, 2016. Certain specialty hospitals, such as those that serve veterans or children in specific, are exempt from the fines.
Of all eligible hospitals in Washington State, 39 percent received a penalty, with an average penalty of 0.37 percent per patient, Kaiser Health News reported.
The CMS Fines, based on how many Medicare patients return to the hospital within a month of their initial visit for specific medical procedures, are meant to incentivize hospitals to keep health care costs down and make sure doctors instruct patients on how to properly follow up on their care.
In order for hospitals to cut costs and improve overall patient health, keeping readmission rates down can be crucial. One way to do that is by making sure patients know how to follow up on their care at home, and ensuring that treatment is completed properly in the first place, negating the need for follow up or “fix-it” procedures.
High Readmission for Medicare Patients Not Limited to Washington
These high readmission rates are not just limited to patients in Washington- Kaiser reported that the majority of the hospitals across the US were fined this year, resulting in a nationwide loss of $420 million.
Here’s a list of the hospitals in Washington State that received a fine for high readmission rates, and the amount of the fine:
- Capital Medical Center, Olympia: 0.1 percent
- Cascade Valley Hospital, Arlington: 0.07 percent
- Deaconess Hospital, Spokane: 0.09 percent
- Grays Harbor Community Hospital, Aberdeen: 0.56 percent
- Harborview Medical Center, Seattle: 0.01 percent
- Harrison Memorial Hospital, Bremerton: 0.13 percent
- Island Hospital, Anacortes: 0.34 percent
- Kadlec Regional Medical Center, Richland: 0.12 percent
- Kennewick General Hospital, Kennewick: 0.28 percent
- Legacy Salmon Creek Medical Center, Vancouver: 1.01 percent
- Multicare Auburn Medical Center, Auburn: 0.01 percent
- Multicare Good Samaritan Hospital, Puyallup: 0.68 percent
- Northwest Hospital, Seattle: 0.11 percent
- Overlake Hospital Medical Center, Bellevue: 0.38 percent
- PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center, Vancouver: 0.78 percent
- Providence Centralia Hospital, Centralia: 0.70 percent
- Providence Holy Family Hospital, Spokane: 0.36 percent
- Providence Regional Medical Center Everett, Everett: 0.09 percent
- Samaritan Hospital, Moses Lake: 0.55 percent
- St. Anthony Hospital, Gig Harbor: 0.01 percent
- St. Clare Hospital, Lakewood: 0.61 percent
- St. Francis Community Hospital, Federal Way: 0.22 percent
- St. Joseph Medical Center, Tacoma: 0.92 percent
- Swedish Edmonds Hospital, Edmonds: 0.23 percent
- Swedish Issaquah, Issaquah: 0.71 percent
- Swedish Medical Center, Seattle: 0.16 percent
- Swedish Medical Center Cherry Hill, Seattle: 0.22 percent
- Tacoma General Allenmore Hospital, Tacoma: 0.24 percent
- Toppenish Community Hospital, Toppenish: 0.6 percent
- University of Washington Medical Center, Seattle: 0.1 percent
- Valley General Hospital, Monroe: 0.02 percent
- Valley Hospital, Spokane: 1.03 percent
- Valley Medical Center, Renton: 0.88 percent
- Virginia Mason Medical Center, Seattle: 0.15 percent
- Walla Walla General Hospital, Walla Walla: 0.57 percent
- Yakima Regional Medical and Cardiac Center, Yakima: 0.43 percent