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Contact: Heather Nairn

PHC4 Annual Report on Hospital Performance Shows Improvement in Readmission Rates but Increasing Mortality Rates.

Harrisburg, PA – December 15, 2022 – A performance report of Pennsylvania hospitals shows significant statewide decreases in 30-day readmission rates, as seen in previous performance reports. However, contrary to previous trends, the new report also shows significant statewide increases in in-hospital mortality rates for most of the reported conditions. Released today by the Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council (PHC4), the annual report, known as the Hospital Performance Report, includes hospital-specific mortality and 30-day readmission ratings as well as volume of cases and hospital charges for patients discharged from Pennsylvania’s acute care hospitals from October 1, 2020 through September 30, 2021, which is federal fiscal year (FFY) 2021. Changes in statewide rates across time are also examined.

This report shows significant statewide increases in mortality rates for eight of the twelve conditions for which mortality ratings are reported. However, there are improvements in 30-day readmission rates, where seven of the thirteen conditions show significant decreases in statewide readmission rates, said Barry Buckingham, PHC4’s Executive Director.

In-Hospital Mortality Rates

Eight conditions showed statistically significant increases in in-hospital mortality rates from FFY 2016 to FFY 2021. None of the reported conditions showed a statistically significant decrease in in-hospital mortality rates. The mortality rate was not reported for one condition, Chest Pain, due to low statewide mortality.

In-Hospital Mortality Rate* Cases with a COVID-19 diagnosis were excluded in 2021.

30-Day Readmission Rates

One condition showed a statistically significant increase in the 30-day readmission rate from FFY 2016 to FFY 2021. Seven conditions showed statistically significant decreases in 30-day readmission rates.

30-Day Readmission Rates* Cases with a COVID-19 diagnosis were excluded in 2021.

Again this year, the report excludes the conditions Pneumonia Aspiration and Pneumonia Infectious due to limitations in the methods used to account for high-risk patients hospitalized for pneumonia during the period of the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, cases with a COVID-19 diagnosis were excluded from the report, and readmissions with a diagnosis of COVID-19 were not counted.

This report is available on PHC4’s website at You can also link to it through social media on Facebook.

PHC4 is an independent state agency charged with collecting, analyzing and reporting information that can be used to improve the quality and restrain the cost of health care in Pennsylvania.

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