Colorado Hospital Association Statement on Colorado Hospital Value Report

GREENWOOD VILLAGE, COLO. – July 23, 2019 – In response to the “Colorado Hospital Value Report” by the Colorado Business Group on Health and the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative, Colorado Hospital Association (CHA) issued this statement:

“We appreciate a report that includes a discussion about quality and patient safety as part of the conversation about affordability,” said Steven J. Summer, president and CEO, CHA. “Connecting cost with quality is essential for patients seeking information about where to receive care.

“However, we do have some concerns about the conclusions reached in this report and would encourage employers to be careful when using this information. On the affordability metrics, it’s worth noting that Medicare payments fall far from covering the cost of care – reimbursing just 69 cents of every dollar hospitals must spend to provide care to patients in Colorado –and should not be held out as a standard benchmark for hospital prices.

“When looking at price and quality, comparisons should be made across comparable hospitals – such as by type, geography and service offerings. Comparing small critical access hospitals to large academic medical centers to community hospitals to urban trauma centers, which vary significantly in the range of services offered and the patient populations served can be misleading. For some hospitals and on some services, because patient numbers are small, it can be very challenging to develop reliable quality measures. A hospital may perform well on one report card and poorly on another. Even within this report, hospitals may perform well overall while scoring poorly in one service category. Consumers are encouraged to seek additional information for the specific service they need.

“CHA recognizes that this report can serve as the beginning of a conversation about how to better inform employers and the public about factors to consider when seeking care and provider partners. We acknowledge that there is variation across Colorado hospitals, and we appreciate this data that may highlight some potential areas for opportunity to improve across the state. CHA supports employers and hospitals working together to ensure that patients get the most appropriate care at affordable prices. In fact, many of our member hospitals and health systems have worked in their communities to develop innovative programs designed to do exactly that. Colorado hospitals also have a longstanding commitment to quality improvement and patient safety and continue to share safety, quality and pricing data with the public because patients and their families need clear, meaningful information to make the right health care decisions.”

About Colorado Hospital Association

Colorado Hospital Association (CHA) is the leading voice of Colorado’s hospital and health system community. Representing more than 100 member hospitals and health systems throughout the state, CHA serves as a trusted, credible and reliable resource on health issues, hospital data and trends for its members, media, policymakers and the general public. Through CHA, Colorado’s hospitals and health systems work together in their shared commitment to improve health and health care in Colorado. Learn more at www.cha.com.