2021 Edition — Quality of Care: Providers

Jen Joynt, Independent Health Care Consultant


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Over the last few decades, there has been significant growth in the measurement and reporting of health care quality outcomes. As health care delivery evolves, it is important to continue to monitor and report on the quality of care delivered to patients in California and across the US. This is part of a series of measures that CHCF is publishing on the quality of care in our state. Topics range from maternal to end-of-life care, and include measures on behavioral health, chronic conditions, and providers.

This set of quality measures focuses on providers, including ambulatory surgery centers, emergency departments, inpatient hospitals, nursing homes, home health care, and hospice.

California’s ambulatory surgery centers perform worse than the national average on two patient safety measures.

In California, a smaller portion of ambulatory surgery center (ASC) patients received the recommended follow up after a normal colonoscopy, or had improved vision function after cataract surgery compared to patients nationwide.

California patients spend more time in emergency departments than patients nationwide.

Patients visiting California emergency departments (EDs) have longer lengths of stay than patients nationwide — especially patients admitted to the hospital from the ED. In California, these patients spend nearly two and a half hours in the ED after a doctor has decided to admit before leaving for their inpatient room.

Hospital-acquired conditions are declining in California but remain a serious concern.

According to Let’s Get Healthy California, hospital-acquired conditions cost California more than $3 billion every year. A composite measure of these conditions declined slightly from 2016 to 2018 but remained above the Let’s Get Healthy California target of 0.5.

White Californians are less likely to die in the hospital than Californians of other races and ethnicities.

While a recent survey of Californians found that only 15% would prefer to die in the hospital, a third or more of Asian, Latinx, Black, and Native American Californians died in the hospital in 2019.1

The companion Excel data file, which provides these data and more, as well as links to each data source, is available for download below. These materials are part of CHCF’s California Health Care Almanac, an online clearinghouse for key data and analyses describing the state’s health care landscape. See our entire collection of current and past editions of Quality of Care.

Notes

  1. Help Wanted: Californians’ Views and Experiences of Serious Illness and End-of-Life Care, California Health Care Foundation, 2019.