VA hospitals stop reporting quality data to Hospital Compare: 4 things to know

As of July 1, the Department of Veterans Affairs stopped reporting hospital quality data to CMS' Hospital Compare website. Here are four things to know about the decision, confirmed last week by USA Today.

1. Since 2011, the VA has reported some quality data to Hospital Compare, including mortality and readmission rates. However, after the wait-time scandal in 2014, Congress passed the Choice Act, which, among other changes, required the VA to report more comprehensive data about patient safety, quality of care and outcome measures to CMS.

2. The Veterans Health Administration's director of clinical analytics and reporting told USA Today lawyers from HHS advised the administration to stop reporting data until CMS and the VA could strike a new deal on how to share information.

3. CMS gave a statement to USA Today, saying in part that the agency is "working closely with the VA to finalize an inter-agency agreement and expect to sign the final agreement shortly."

4. Additionally, the VA has taken down its own quality comparison website, hospitalcompare.va.gov. According to USA Today, the website did not meet certain accessibility requirements, as it used colors to denote hospital performance. The department is seeking a contractor to rebuild the website.

More articles on hospital quality:
Analysis: Hospital Compare needs an update to improve patient understanding
Hospitals with high patient experience star ratings don't have better outcomes, new analysis finds
Six actions to prepare for a transparent world

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