Are brand-name hospitals better?

Source: ConsumerReports.org, Last Reviewed: June 2011

Most hospitals don’t operate independently but instead are part of a large health-care system that often has a well-known name. Think Baylor Health Care, the Cleveland Clinic, the Henry Ford Health system, and the Mayo Clinic.

We recently took a close look at 61 systems with at least five hospitals that publicly report data on hospital-acquired infections. We focused on bloodstream infections in their intensive-care units that stemmed from central-lines, which are large catheters used to deliver fluids, medication, and nutrition to patients. They are the most common hospital-acquired infections, and kill up to 25 percent of the people who develop them….

….Bottom line: A famous name doesn’t guarantee low bloodstream-infection rates, and results can vary considerably, even among hospitals in the same system.

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