Hospital Compare
Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services




Hospital Compare was created as a result of the Hospital Quality Initiative through the efforts of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Hospital Quality Alliance (HQA). The HQA was a public-private collaboration established in December 2002 and it consisted of organizations that represented consumers, payers, hospitals, clinicians, accrediting organizations, federal agencies, and other stakeholders. The HQA disbanded in December 2011, and CMS currently maintains the Hospital Compare Web site.

Scope of Report

Report’s Intended End Users

This report provides information for consumers to make informed decisions and select hospitals through direct performance comparison related to many conditions.

Understanding the Score


Hospital Compare ranks hospital based on Better, No Different or Worse than U.S. National Average.


Hospital Compare reports quarterly on the month after end of quarter: Apr, Jul, Oct, Jan. Collection period differs from one measure to another, but it always consist of 12 months or more. Report offers National, state, hospital level report for each measure


  • Nation’s acute care, critical access, Veteran’s Affairs (VA), and Children’s hospitals
  • Medicare- Certified


  • Maryland and U.S territories are excluded from the measure calculations
  • A measure is excluded if:
    • the data is inaccurate;
    • the measure does not meet inclusion criteria;
    • the number of infections is less than one;
    • MRSA and/or C-Diff is present on admission (POA) and above a predetermined cut-point; or
    • there is less than 100 HCAHPS surveys submitted to CMS.

Data Source

  • National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN)
  • Hospital Compare (HCAHPS)


Measures are weighed and stratified. Some measures are risk standardized and volume adjusted. Pooled mean rates, medians, and empirical distributions are calculated to generate the national average for each measure. Comparisons of pooled mean rates are performed using Poisson regression. There is no calculated overall composite score for all measures


Improvement Tools

Improvement tools and resources can be found at

HCAHPS Star Ratings for California