Overall Hospital Quality Star Rating Updates for December 2017

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the new Overall Hospital Quality Star Rating on Hospital Compare with the most recent refresh on December 21, 2017. CMS re-evaluated the Overall Star Rating methodology based on feedback received during the public input period. (NOTE: these changes do not impact CMS’s methodology for assigning star ratings specifically for HCAHPS and its measures.)

As outlined in the public release, the below updates were implemented based on Technical Expert Panel recommendations. The public release from CMS states, “Overall these methodological enhancements yield a broader Star Rating distribution, increase reliability, and improve the stability of hospital estimates.”

Star Rating Enhancements Table.jpg


A comparison of the star rating distributions from October 2017 to December 2017 illustrates the shift in the number of hospitals per rating. The new overall star rating distribution will level out the spike in the number of three-star hospitals.

Hospital Star Rating Distribution.jpg


Seven group scores make up the hospital summary score. Mortality, Safety, Readmission, and Patient Experience measures will each account for 22% of the Star Rating Weight.

Group Weights for Star Rating Chart.jpg

To learn more about the updates and new methodology, please reference QualityNet documents provided by CMS:

Public Release
Updates and Specifications Report
Statistical Analysis System (SAS) Package