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February 2010 St@teside

Louisiana Officials Make Comparative Health Care Data Available

As of February 3, health care consumers in Louisiana now have access to a Website which enables them to compare cost, quality, and performance of local hospitals, nursing homes, health plans, and prescription drugs.  Key performance data on health care facilities include death rates, readmission rates, complication rates for procedures, and nationally accepted quality and performance measures for health plans.  Governor Bobby Jindal described the site,, as a critical component to improving accountability and outcomes within the state’s health care system.

To create the site, the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH) worked with a panel of people representing a broad swath of the health care industry, including consumer advocates, to gather publicly available data.  The site contains data from 113 of the state’s 131 acute care/critical access hospitals, 285 of the 292 nursing homes, 9 private health plans, the state’s Medicaid program, and more than 1,000 pharmacies.  By the end of 2010, DHH will work to include the cost of many treatments and procedures and a statewide directory of practicing physicians.

Plans for the site were part of Jindal’s legislative package for the 2008 regular legislative session.  Lawmakers passed the Consumer’s Right to Know Act which authorized DHH to collect a wide range of health care information and publish it on the Internet.  For more information on the site and views from key players in the state, refer to this press release from the Governor.

Sources:  “New Website Allows Consumers to Compare Cost, Quality Data on Health Providers, Drugs,” BNA Health Care Policy Report, February 15, 2010.

Governor Jindal Launches ‘Consumer’s Right to Know’ Initiative,” News Release, Office of Governor Bobby Jindal, February 2, 2010.