WASHINGTON, May 21 (UPI) -- The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is placing ads in 58 daily U.S. newspapers to alert consumers to its Web site comparing hospitals.
The ads, placed by HHS' Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services promote Hospital Compare at www.hospitalcompare.hhs.gov, as an easy-to-use Web site that helps consumers make well-informed decisions when choosing a hospital.
The ads provide scores from two of the 26 quality and patient satisfaction measures on the Web site for a sample of hospitals in the newspapers' areas.
"These ads -- and Hospital Compare -- are intended to give consumers more information for making choices about their healthcare," Mike Leavitt, HHS secretary, says in the statement. "This brings us closer to meeting the goal of using new technologies to make the quality of healthcare services all across the nation more transparent to the public."
The Web site allows users to compare the quality of care provided in nearly 4,000 hospitals across the nation such as the percentage of patients at each hospital who always received help when they requested it, as reported by the patients, or the percentage of patients at each hospital who were given antibiotics one hour prior to surgery, as reported by the hospitals.