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CHOOSING A HOSPITAL
GETTING AN OVERVIEW OF YOUR OPTIONS

STEP THREE: GETTING THE FACTS - WORKSHEET

Since there is basic data to gather for each hospital you are considering, you may want to copy this two page assessment tool and fill one out for each hospital visited.

NAME OF HOSPITAL:
LOCATION:


WHEN YOU VISIT, ASK FOR...

A copy of the hospitalís Patientís Bill of Rights document

A Patient Information Packet

A written description of the hospitalís services and fees

An annual report or statement of organization

A hospital report card on general performance issues or the results of hospitalís latest patient satisfaction survey



HOSPITAL QUALITY ATTRIBUTES

Accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Health Care Organizations (JCAHO)

Percentage of physicians with privileges at the hospital (and/or staff physicians) who are Board Certified*  

Number of Registered Nurses to each patient overall  

Number of Nurse Specialists (masterís degree) in hospital units  

Ratio of Licensed Practical Nurses to each patient overall  

Ratio of graduate nurses and licensed practical nurses to each patient in specialty area: 1 nurse to:
to 10 patients       to 15 patients       to 20 patients      

Participates in clinical trials

Services and specialties provided by the hospital meet your specific health goals and potential medical needs

Financial aid services available
Interest-free financing of co-payments/deductibles

Assistance in filing insurance claims
Medicare and Supplemental Coverage   Medicaid

Social Services assistance in hospital as well as post-discharge follow up

*For other ways to ascertain board certifications for specialists see American Board of Medical Specialties in the FOR MORE INFORMATION section of this guide.


HOSPITAL TOUR CHECKPOINTS

Hospital conveniently located

Ample/Convenient parking

Courtesy Van service available

Hospital presents a clean appearance and pleasant air

Lobby greeting warm, friendly, relaxed

Comfortable waiting room

Vending machines nearby

Visitor phone in the waiting room

Patient rooms inviting and cheery, conducive to recovery

Patient rooms have comfortable chairs for visitors

Privacy considered in the room design

Television, internet, radio service

Television, internet service at extra cost. Paid by day/week



DISCHARGE POLICY

Discharge plan is developed for you before you leave the hospital

Provides patient/caretaker with necessary training to continue care at home

Includes training in
changing dressings,
taking medications
using special medical devices

Provides patient/family with written instructions on at-home care

Provides written plan for return to health (normal activity)



ABOUT THE PHYSICIAN/SURGEON

Physician/surgeon who will perform the procedure is Board Certified
has continued specialty education

Particular procedure is performed frequently (annual basis) by physician

Has success rate in a specific medical procedure you need

Has responsibility for maintaining your personal care plan
during hospitalization
during home recovery period



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