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Health Reward Stat of the Day – Jan 4

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The federal government is penalizing 758 hospitals with higher rates of patient safety incidents, and more than half of those places had also been fined last year, Medicare records released late Wednesday show.

Among the hospitals getting punished for the first time are some well-known institutions, including Stanford Health Care in Northern California, Denver Health Medical Center and two satellite hospitals run by the Mayo Clinic Health System in Minnesota, according to the federal data.

The fines are based on the government’s assessment of the frequency of several kinds of infections, sepsis, hip fractures and other complications. Medicare will lower all its payments to the penalized hospitals by 1 percent over the course of the federal fiscal year, which runs through September 2016. In total, Medicare estimates the penalties will cost hospitals $364 million.

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