People are able to make better decisions about health care
when they are well-informed. For this reason, residents of
Maryland should use the Maryland Hospital Performance Evaluation
Guide to assist them when choosing where to receive healthcare
services. The Maryland Health Care Commission carefully gathers
information about the performance of Maryland acute care
hospitals in several areas. The information is then presented
in a way that compares one hospital to another in the Hospital
Guide. This section helps you to understand the Hospital
Guide by explaining where the Maryland Health Care Commission
gets its information and how it is used in the Hospital Guide.
Source of Data Used for Analyses
Information in the Hospital Guide comes from reports submitted by hospitals to the Maryland Health Services Cost Review Commission. These reports contain clinical, demographic and billing information on patients discharged from Maryland hospitals. To protect patient privacy, the information from the Commission does not contain the names of patients or any other information that could reveal someone’s identity. It does include information about the care patients receive at Maryland acute-care hospitals.
Types of Cases Not Included in the Guide
Some cases from the Commission are not included because:
• Hospital billing claims (a primary source of much of this information) are missing a discharge date.
• Cases are not from an acute-care hospital.
• Patients have a billing charge of zero. (A zero billing charge marks cases that are initially billed incorrectly and are later submitted as a different claim.)
• Patients have a billing charge of more than $2 million as these cases may represent unusual circumstances or an error in the billing information reported.
• If the number of cases reported by the hospital is less than 20 for a given category, the data are not displayed in the report.
Selecting Diagnosis Related Groups (DRGs) for the Hospital Performance Evaluation Guide
Diagnosis related groups (DRGs) are broad categories describing general medical conditions that Maryland hospitals treat. Over 50 DRGs for common medical conditions are included in the Hospital Guide.
Calculating Hospital Discharges
Volume is calculated as the number of cases a hospital treats for a particular medical condition. If a patient is admitted and discharged twice for the same medical condition from the same hospital, that patient would be counted twice in the hospital's volume for that medical condition.
Calculating Length of Stay
Length of stay is calculated by subtracting the admission date from the discharge date. If a patient is admitted and discharged on the same date, the length of stay is counted as one day.