Wisconsin Hospital Association: State’s critical access hospitals ranked third best nationally for quality efforts

The federal Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) has ranked Wisconsin’s Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs) third best in the nation for health care quality reporting and improvement measures. HRSA annually recognizes top performing states that achieve the highest quality-related reporting rates and levels of quality improvement over the previous 12-month period. Wisconsin’s CAHs came in third for 2020, behind just Virginia and South Carolina.

Critical Access Hospitals are lower-volume, rural facilities that are key health care safety-net providers serving Wisconsin’s rural population. There are 58 CAHs across the state. HRSA’s measures are from its Medicare Beneficiary Quality Improvement Project (MBQIP), which includes more than 1,350 hospitals across 45 states. You can view HRSA’s announcement here.

“Critical access hospitals in Wisconsin have been leaders in voluntarily reporting quality data,” WHA Chief Quality Officer Beth Dibbert said. “Our CAHs perform better than the state and national scores in important areas such as patient satisfaction and infection rates.

“The public, transparent reporting of many of the MBQIP measures allow these hospitals to proactively drive quality initiatives that are so important for improving patient safety,” Dibbert said.

Wisconsin has a long history as a national health care quality leader, not only for patient outcomes but also in innovative transparency initiatives. WHA’s CheckPoint is one such initiative – a resource providing reliable, valid and consumer-focused measures of health care in Wisconsin that informs health care decisions and supports quality improvement activities.

“Today’s announcement is yet another affirmation of what we already know: whether you live in rural or urban Wisconsin, patients can receive some of the best health care in the country right in their own community,” WHA President and CEO Eric Borgerding said.

“These quality achievements do not happen by chance. WHA is proud to help our members achieve such strong results for their patients through nationally-recognized quality improvement programming and effective advocacy in Madison and Washington, D.C.”