Iowa scored in the top quartile of states for overall health care quality, according to the latest edition of a national report, published last month by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The 2012 National Health Quality Report found that overall, health care quality in the United States is improving, but access to care is getting worse and disparities in quality and access to care remain unchanged for minority and low-income Americans. 

In 2005, Americans failed to receive about 34 percent of health care services they should have gotten based on their age and medical conditions. By 2009, that statistic declined to 30 percent of services. In 2002, 24 percent of Americans encountered difficulties accessing health care; by 2009, that figure had increased to 26 percent of Americans.

More information about the state of Iowa’s medical industry can be found in this report. It’s available online at the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality website www.ahrq.gov. Click on the Research Tools and Data button, and then select the 2012 PDF version.   The Health Policy Corporation of Iowa (HPCI), a consortium of large employer health plans, also recently published a compilation of Iowa data in a performance chartbook.

The initiative is an effort to provide greater transparency of provider performance, HPCI President Paul Pietzsch said. To access the HPCI Chartbook, visit www.hpci.org.