Perspectives in Hospital Medicine

Grade pending: Lessons for hospital quality reporting from the New York City restaurant sanitation inspection program

Abstract

Public quality reporting programs have been widely implemented in hospitals in an effort to improve quality and safety. One such program is Hospital Compare, Medicare's national quality reporting program for US hospitals. The New York City sanitary grade inspection program is a parallel effort for restaurants. The aims of Hospital Compare and the New York City sanitary inspection program are fundamentally similar: to address a common market failure resulting from consumers' lack of information on quality and safety. However, by displaying easily understandable information at the point of service, the New York City sanitary inspection program is better designed to encourage informed consumer decision making. We argue that this program holds important lessons for public quality reporting of US hospitals. Journal of Hospital Medicine 2015;10:116–119. © 2014 Society of Hospital Medicine

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