Medicare Statistics Raise Questions about McHenry & Woodstock Hospitals’ Use of Medical Imaging

The Federal government has released data showing the use of medical imaging for hospitals across the country.

The data base allows the comparison of three hospitals on one page, so I selected Barrington’s, McHenry’s and Woodstock’s.

Taking a look at the information provided below and you can get some idea of what the Feds think of the utilization rates for the bottom three.

Even after reading the explanation for the first one, no lay person would be able to figure out where the numbers should be.

The explanation talks about “high,” but gives no clue as what would be considered too high.

Why even publish the numbers if there is to be no way to interpret them.

The other three have explanations within the descriptions to the left.

Let’s look at them.

With regard to mammograms, the explanation above says,

“A number that is much lower than 8% may mean there’s not enough follow-up. A number much higher than 14% may mean there’s too much unnecessary follow-up.”

Good Shepherd’s at 9% is a bit above the national and state averages, but below the 14% mentioned as too high.

Woodstock’s is at 3.4% and McHenry’s at 5.2%.

While Centegra’s hospitals are on the low end of the follow-up mammogram array, they are on the high end of double abdomen scans.  Both are more than three times the national average.

Good Shepherd is 31%lower than the national average.

What does the explanation say?

“The range for this measure is 0 to 1. A number very close to 1 may mean that too many patients are being given a double scan when a single scan is all they need.”

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