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According to the Oklahoma Foundation for Medical Quality, information on quality and cost of hospital care is becoming obtainable online and by request, a good thing and an indication of what the future holds.
The 35-year-old nonprofit organization assists hospitals and a doctor implement care standards and tracks their effectiveness. However, apart from 22 standards related to heart attack and pneumonia care, surgical infections and other standards related to home health, federal law shields responses.
In most publicly reported measures, Oklahoma hospitals have improved considerably in the past five years and often go beyond the national average.
If you want to determine which hospital has the highest rate of stop-smoking counseling or gets heart attack patients into angioplasty the quickest, the information is without difficulty accessible and detailed. If you want to determine how many infections have resulted from urinary catheters, no such luck - at least not yet.
Foundation Medical Director Dr. Dale Bratzler said, "There's data out there, but nobody is using it for accountability."
Comparing The Numbers
Among Oklahoma Hospitals