OHA reports show Oregon hospitals remain financially stable under health care transformation

Today the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) released two reports related to the performance and stability of Oregon’s hospitals. Oregon’s hospitals are focusing on improving patient safety and the quality of care they provide, according to the third annual report of OHA’s Hospital Transformation Performance Program (HTPP).

OHA also released the Q4 2016 Oregon hospital financial report, which highlights that while the fourth quarter of 2016 was a turbulent quarter with lower operating and total margins, the overall margins for 2016 continue to remain higher than typically observed before the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

The hospital financial report demonstrates that Oregon hospitals continue to stabilize from the high levels seen in the aftermath of the ACA. However, net patient revenue continues to see steady increases and charity care remains low after a sharp drop from 2013 to 2014. Overall, Oregon hospitals remain financially strong heading into the future.

“The reports released today give OHA insights into how Oregon’s hospitals are performing on key measures and their financial strength,” said Lynne Saxton, OHA Director. “They are also an important element of our commitment to increased transparency and accountability as we continue to make progress toward better health, better care, and lower costs for all Oregonians.”

Hospital Transformation Performance Program
The HTPP report covers the program’s third year, October 2015 through September 2016. OHA requires hospitals to submit data on 11 measures or “metrics” that include goals such as reducing health care-associated infections, reducing readmissions of patients after discharge, improving medication safety, improving overall patient experience, and screening for alcohol and substance use.

The health authority’s Hospital Metrics Advisory Committee developed the HTPP measures in coordination with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. The 11 measures cover six areas, including two that focus on collaboration between hospitals and coordinated care organizations (sharing information about emergency department visits with primary care providers, and behavioral health).  Hospitals are scored on whether they meet benchmarks or make progress toward them as measured against baselines set in the latest performance year.

This year $87 million in “quality pool” dollars, funded by the Hospital Provider Assessment Program, is awarded to hospitals based on their performance on these measures.

The quality pool funds are paid in two phases. Each participating hospital can receive a lump sum of $500,000 by achieving at least 75 percent of the measures for which it is eligible. Thirteen hospitals achieved this, resulting in $6.5 million in payments to hospitals in phase one.

The second phase of the quality pool payments is in the form of proportional awards to hospitals for meeting the individual benchmarks or making progress toward them. All 28 participating hospitals received some payment, and Legacy Mount Hood became the first hospital to meet the target on all 11 measures.

The HTPP program covers the state’s “DRG” hospitals. Those are hospitals that are paid per patient by the state Medicaid program based on a patient’s diagnosis or diagnosis-related group (DRG) rather than for every service performed.

The full reports are available online:

More information about the Hospital Transformation Performance Program is available on the OHA website, or by contacting Jon Collins, PhD, director of the OHA Office of Health Analytics.