The federal government has penalized 774 hospitals across the country, including University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics and nine other Iowa hospitals, for having the highest rates of patient infections or other potentially avoidable medical complications, Kaiser Health News reported. Those hospitals, which include some of the nation’s top medical centers, will lose 1% of their Medicare payments over 12 months. The penalties are levied under a program created in 2010 under the Affordable Care Act that uses the threat of losing Medicare money to motivate hospitals to protect patients from harm. The latest round of penalties is based on data of patients treated in the hospitals anytime between mid-2017 and 2019. The Hospital-Acquired Condition Reduction Program, now in its seventh year, has been criticized by hospitals that say the program arbitrarily issues penalties. Under the law, Medicare each year must punish the one-quarter of general care hospitals with the highest rates of patient safety issues. Kaiser Health has a searchable database to look up penalized hospitals by year.