Hospital Performance Report 2008 - News Release

Contact: Joe Martin, Communications Director
717-232-6787 or


Harrisburg, PA - September 24, 2009 - The overall patient mortality rate for the 20 conditions consistently reported in 2002 through 2008 decreased significantly, falling from 5.1% in 2002 to 4.2% in 2008, according to the state's annual Hospital Performance Report released today by the Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council (PHC4).

The overall readmission rate for the 15 conditions consistently reported during this time period increased significantly from 18.3% in 2002 to 19.1% in 2008. Yet, the overall readmission rate has plateaued in recent years as the 2008 rate of 19.1% is not significantly different from the 2004 rate of 19.0%.

"Pennsylvania hospitals, physicians and nurses should be commended for their contribution to the decline in patient mortality rates," said Joe Martin, PHC4's Communications Director.

For the 21 categories covered in the report, there were 57,852 readmissions for any reason in 2008, resulting in over $2.5 billion in charges and 350,000 hospital days. Complications or infections were the cause of 22,094 of these readmissions, which accounted for almost $1.1 billion in charges and 157,000 hospital days. Readmissions for complication or infection comprise 38.2% of all readmissions.

"The number of readmissions and associated financial implications present ongoing challenges for our health care delivery system," said Martin.

The PHC4 Hospital Performance Report includes information about risk-adjusted mortality, readmissions, lengths of hospitalization (stay), and hospital charges for patients admitted to 158 Pennsylvania hospitals from October 1, 2007 to September 30, 2008. The new report evaluates hospital performance across 31 common medical procedures and treatments. Data for additional treatment categories is available on the PHC4 website.

Other Report Highlights:

The Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council 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. Copies of the Hospital Performance Report, as well as hospital comments, are available on the Council's website at