Americans will be better able to compare the quality of care available at numerous hospitals, thanks to the release of new information on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ website.
Medical imaging was a particular focus of the new data, according to department Secretary, Kathleen Sebelius. “This new update to [the] Hospital Compare feature will help patients and their families better compare quality at America’s hospitals. And thanks to this new update, for the first time, Medicare patients can see how efficiently facilities use certain types of imaging equipment and keep them safe from exposure to potentially harmful radiation that may not be necessary,” Sebelius says.
HHS says the information should help counteract what it described as the overuse of MRI and CT technology in diagnosis, which can expose patients to dangerous levels of radiation if improperly used.
In general, consumers who are able to make better-informed decisions about their health care tend to be healthier. This can affect not only their health and life insurance premiums, but their quality of life and longevity as well.