UPDATE: "The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) began publicly posting one- to five-star ratings for nearly 6,000 U.S. Dialysis Facilities" including large providers such as DaVita Healthcare Partners, Inc. and Fresenius Medical Care, Inc., according to Modern Healthcare. The scale is meant to help Dialysis patients evaluate and compare quality at different Dialysis Treatment Centers.
While most Dialysis Centers are considered "mediocre," and some poor; there were some standout centers. DaVita boasted, "As a champion for improving quality patient care, we are happy to share that for two years in a row DaVita has been the leader in five-star ratings, with more centers rated four- or five-stars than any other major Dialysis provider."
The Large Dialysis Organization may have a point seeing as of the 586 top performing five-star Dialysis Facilities, DaVita owned 202 centers while Fresenius (Largest Dialysis Organization in the United States) owned 110. On the opposite end, Fresenius had 279 facilities that were low performing (one-star) and DaVita had only 38. A stark difference wouldn't you agree?
Complete the below form and give your Dialysis Center a rating. Also, click here to view the official CMS ratings for your Dialysis Facility and other centers in your area to which you may consider requesting a transfer if your current Dialysis Facility is low performing.
ORIGINAL: Most Chronic Kidney Disease patients who conduct Dialysis know that their Dialysis Treatments are literally the difference between them living and dying. Hence, the quality of the care that patients receive is absolutely critical. Wouldn't you agree? Many patients may be surprised to learn that until recently, however, there was no way for them to know or gauge what level of quality care their Dialysis Centers were delivering. But, that has now changed since earlier this year, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), launched a Dialysis Clinic "Five-Star Rating System."
Similar to how hotels, restaurants and movies are rated, this new system will provide your specific Dialysis Center a rating from Poor (1 star) to Excellent (5 stars) depending on previous performance. For instance, while Satellite Dialysis of Laguna Hills was given 1 star by the new CMS rating system, Satellite Dialysis of Orange received a 5 star score. Do you have a 5 star Dialysis Clinic? Use the following link to access your Dialysis Clinic's score (http://medicare.gov/DialysisFacilityCompare/).
The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported that, "For people who are preparing for Dialysis, many might not know that they can choose their Dialysis Provider, Treatment Facility and even type of Dialysis Treatment." This may also be the case for some long-term Dialysis patients. That is why the goal of the Dialysis Clinic "Five-Star Rating System" is to offer a level of transparency that previously did not exist, and to help Chronic Kidney Disease patients make better and more informed decisions about their care.
Kent Thiry has been the Chief Executive Officer for DaVita HealthCare Partners since 1999, and said to Forbes Magazine that the prioritization of care is "the primary driver of how we care for our patients as well as our business success.” It is no surprise then that DaVita Kidney Care has 54% of all the 4 star and 5 star centers in the industry, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
Chronic Kidney Disease patients conducting Dialysis should know that CMS unveiled a similar rating system for nursing homes in 2008. It was successful and today the Nursing Home Compare website gets approximately 1.4 million visits per year. Similarly, click the following link to visit the Dialysis Clinic "Five-Star Rating System" and share it with other Dialysis patients (http://medicare.gov/DialysisFacilityCompare/).
After viewing your Dialysis rating score, click here to post your Dialysis Center rating and share your thoughts with over 2,100 Friends on the KidneyBuzz.com Facebook Fan Page. Also, visit KidneyBuzz.com every day for the latest breaking news and information which teaches those with Chronic Kidney Disease, Dialysis and Diabetes how to better manage and improve their lives.