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Database Shows Health Systems Wide Reach Varying Characteristics

An AHRQ-funded database of the nation’s health systems showed that 70 percent of hospitals are in health systems, and that health systems vary substantially by size, ownership and geographic distribution, according to an article in Medical Care Research and Review. The Compendium of U.S. Health Systems, issued in 2016, was developed to support performance improvements by providing researchers, policymakers and healthcare administrators with characteristics of the nation’s 626 health systems. The article by AHRQ-supported researchers described how they defined health systems, developed a list and determined the system features included in the compendium. The compendium was developed as part of AHRQ’s Comparative Health System Performance Initiative, which studies how healthcare delivery systems promote evidence-based practices in delivering care.

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