Hospital industry lobbyists earned their money recently when the Obama administration bowed to Congressional pressure and delayed the release of a new system to rate hospitals based on health outcomes for patients treated under Medicare.

The delay is likely to be just a short-term respite for the industry. Hospital ratings – whether based on patient satisfaction or various measures of quality – are here to stay. As patient-consumers increasingly transition to high-deductible plans and other models that increase their cost exposure, they are demanding more transparency and information for the choices they need to make.

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