The seven largest publicly traded for-profit hospital companies had quality scores close to the average for all U.S. hospitals, according to an analysis of CMS Hospital Compare data by Morgan Stanley & Co. Triad Hospitals achieved the highest overall score among the companies at 79.6%, followed by Tenet Healthcare Corp. at 79.5% and HCA at 78%. The other scores were 75.1% at Health Management Associates, 74% at LifePoint Hospitals and 73.2% at both Universal Health Services and Community Health Systems. The U.S. average was 75%. In its report, Morgan Stanley said having average quality scores may be a challenge for hospital operators as government and private payers increasingly adopt pay-for-performance contracts, but improving their quality scores could allow for-profit companies to seize volume from local competitors. The analysis aggregated the scores for all of a company's hospitals on 15 of 20 quality metrics into a single score representing the overall percentage of recommended practices the hospitals used. -- by Vince Galloro
For-profit hospital chains' quality near U.S. average
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