Healthcare 101: How HCAHPS Works

Posted on March 1, 2013. Filed under: Government and Healthcare, HCAHPS, Patient Experience, Post By Christy Whipple |

How HCAHPS Works 


ImageHCAHPS is part of Medicare’s value-based purchasing program, created as an effort to initiate reimbursement models that pay for a high quality of care rather than a high quantity of care. HCAHPS is a survey that measures patient satisfaction with the entire hospital experience.

Recently discharged patients are asked to answer 27 questions that are used to measure their perception of the quality of care they received in the hospital.

The HCAHPS survey includes seven key areas: responsiveness of hospital staff, nursing communication skills, physician communication skills, pain management, quietness and cleanliness, explanations about medications and discharge instructions. The survey is designed to allow objective and meaningful comparisons between hospitals in areas that are important to consumers. Results are published online and can be viewed by the public.

The data is used to determine reimbursement. Hospitals can gain or lose up to two percent of their Medicare reimbursement fees, depending on how well they score. A hospital that chooses not to participate in HCAHPS is automatically docked two percent.

HCAHPS survey data has been collected and tallied since October 2012. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) began implementing value-based incentive payments for hospitals this year.


To learn more about HCAHPS and how Introcomm can help you raise your scores and lower the risk of reimbursement penalties, contact us


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