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Assessing Equity Measures in Hospital Readmissions

April 03, 2024
by Chigoziri Konkwo

Discoveries & Impact (April 2024)

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) have developed two methods for assessing hospital performance for care equity, with the goal of improving the quality of healthcare delivery. A recent collaborative study conducted by Yale researchers sought to apply these methods towards developing a framework for measuring equitable readmissions to the hospital, and to identify hospitals that have equitable rates of readmission.

The study found that only a minority of hospitals achieved equitable readmission rates, both regarding insurance status and race. However, those hospitals with equitable readmissions tended to serve fewer Black patients, and also varied significantly in their status as teaching hospitals, their size, and their geographic location. Additionally, both low cost and higher quality were associated with equitable readmissions.

These findings highlight the importance of addressing structural racism as a primary contributor to the disparities in equitable healthcare practices, and the need to consider demographic differences in the patient populations between hospitals in the establishment of a better equitable readmission structure.

To learn more, read the study in JAMA, “Measuring Equity in Readmission as a Distinct Assessment of Hospital Performance.”

Nash, K. A., Himali Weerahandi, Yu, H., Venkatesh, A. K., Holaday, L. W., Herrin, J., Lin, Z., Horwitz, L. I., Ross, J. S., & Bernheim, S. M. (2024). Measuring Equity in Readmission as a Distinct Assessment of Hospital Performance. JAMA, 331(2), 111–111.

Submitted by Julie Parry on April 03, 2024