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Quality and Patient Safety
Quality & Safety Measures
Defining Quality in Health Care
Defining Costs of Health Care
Asking the Right Questions
Message from Sentara's CEO

Ways to Define Quality: Experience

When it comes to treating a particular disease, nothing can equal experience. Studies show that physicians and hospitals have better results when they treat a high number of patients for a particular disease and perform large numbers of procedures to treat it.

According to a report published in the Annals of Internal Medicine (September 17, 2002), the majority of studies find a lower patient mortality rate for a given procedure when the hospital or physician has a high volume of experience performing that procedure. So be sure to ask health care providers how much experience they have with the procedure or service you are researching.

A number of independent organizations in the country make it their job to assess and rate quality in health care. To learn how Sentara measures up for experience and quality, visit one of these sites:

 American Hospital Association (AHA)

 Health Grades, an independent quality ratings service

 Hospital Compare, U.S. Department of Health & Human Services

 The Joint Commission

 The Leap Frog Group

 The Virginia Board of Medicine

 Virginia Health Information

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