health/insidehospital.jpgHealthcare ratings organization HealthGrades has released 2007 quality ratings of every nonfederal hospital in the country. It also issued the ninth annual HealthGrades Hospital Quality in America Study - the largest study of its kind.

Consumers need to know that an enormous "quality chasm" exists between the best and poorest-performing hospitals in their city and nationwide. The typical patient has a 65 percent lower chance of dying at the nation's highest-rated hospitals compared with the lowest-rated hospitals. That "quality chasm" is growing, as the nation's best-performing hospitals lowered their mortality rates 45 percent faster than the poorest-performing hospitals over the same time period.

The HealthGrades Hospital Quality in America Study analyzed 40 million Medicare hospitalization records to rate the quality of care at each of the nation's more than 5,000 nonfederal hospitals. The star ratings are free to consumers on

--courtesy of Medialink