ALTON — Alton Memorial Hospital scored among the best of regional hospitals in patient satisfaction and readmission rates, according to the St. Louis Area Business Health Coalition.
AMH placed in the 82nd percentile for the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) Composite Score and National Ranking, ranking it fourth in the St. Louis area. The composite score considers how well a hospital performed on measures of patient satisfaction such as cleanliness, pain management, responsiveness and noise.
The U.S. average for hospitals was the 50th percentile and the St. Louis average was the 49th percentile.
AMH also had the second lowest 30-day readmission rate (18.4 percent) among 23 St. Louis area hospitals. The national average is 19.7 percent and the St. Louis average is 20.3 percent.
About one in five Medicare patients are admitted back to the hospital within 30 days or less. This costs $17.4 billion per year. Clear communication from health care professionals to patients can lead to a significant reduction in these readmissions, so hospitals with higher return rates are paid less by Medicare.
Why a patient might need to be readmitted:
• New illness
• Not following doctors’ orders
• Not taking medicine
Five ways to prevent readmissions
• Ask questions. Take notes. Know all instructions before you go home.
• Ask if there are resources in your community that might help with transportation, chores around the house and other tasks.
• Take your medicine the way your doctor says you should. If you are taken off your normal medicine at the hospital, ask if you should take them when you go home.
• Make your follow-up appointments as soon as you can. Keep those appointments.
• Watch for changes in your health and weight. Tell your doctor if something seems not quite right.