Feinberg teaching hospital penalized by Medicare for hospital-acquired conditions

Madeline Fox, Campus Editor

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Northwestern Memorial Hospital is among 23 Illinois hospitals being penalized by Medicare for high rates of potentially avoidable infections and complications like staph infections, blood clots and bed sores, according to data released by the national insurance program last month.

The 758 hospitals penalized nationwide will lose a portion of their Medicare reimbursements for fiscal year 2016.

Northwestern Memorial Hospital, the primary teaching hospital for the Feinberg School of Medicine, also received a penalty last year under Medicare’s Hospital-Acquired Condition Reduction Program, established by the 2010 Affordable Care Act. The program punishes hospitals with the highest rates of certain medical complications and infections, and applies to more than 3,000 hospitals nationwide.

Under the HAC, hospitals are given a score from one to 10, with 10 being the worst, on their rates of hospital-acquired complications. The HAC penalizes any hospital that scores higher than 6.75. Northwestern Memorial Hospital’s score of 8.75 was the fourth-highest in Illinois, down from 9.025, which was the third-highest last year.

Northwestern Memorial Hospital did not respond to multiple requests for comment.

Email: foxm@u.northwestern.edu
Twitter: @maddycfox