Chapter 3. Characteristics of Participating Hospitals

2007 Comparative Database Report

Highlights

As background for understanding the survey results, this chapter presents information about the distribution of database hospitals by bed size (number of patient beds), teaching status, ownership and control, and geographic region. Although the 382 hospitals that voluntarily submitted data to the database do not constitute a statistically selected sample, the characteristics of these hospitals are fairly consistent with the distribution of U.S. hospitals registered with the American Hospital Association (AHA). The characteristics of database hospitals by AHA-defined categories of bed size, teaching status, ownership and control, and region are presented in the following tables.1 Data are presented which describe the database hospitals and the survey respondents from these hospitals, as well as the distribution of U.S. AHA-registered hospitals included in the 2004 AHA Annual Survey of Hospitals.2

  • Overall, the characteristics of the 382 database hospitals are fairly consistent with the distribution of U.S. hospitals registered with the American Hospital Association (AHA).
  • Participating hospitals represent a range of bed sizes and geographic regions.
  • Most hospitals are nonteaching (76 percent) and nongovernment owned (voluntary/nonprofit or proprietary/investor-owned) (72 percent).

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Bed Size

Table 3-1 shows the distribution of database hospitals and respondents by hospital bed size. Overall, the distribution of database hospitals by bed size is similar to the distribution of AHA-registered U.S. hospitals. The bed size category of 25 to 49 beds has the largest number of hospitals (97 database hospitals or 25 percent). Equivalent to the distribution of AHA-registered U.S. hospitals, 73 percent of the hospitals in the database have fewer than 200 beds.

It is important to note that while there are more smaller hospitals in the database, they account for fewer respondents than larger hospitals. Hospitals with fewer than 200 beds account for only 34 percent of all database respondents (37,032 respondents), whereas hospitals with 200 or more beds account for almost twice as many respondents (66 percent, or 71,589 respondents).

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Teaching Status

As shown in Table 3-2, most database hospitals were nonteaching (76 percent), which compares closely to the distribution of AHA-registered U.S. hospitals.

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Ownership and Control

The distribution of database hospitals and respondents by government versus nongovernment ownership and control is shown in Table 3-3. Most database hospitals are nongovernment owned and controlled (i.e., voluntary/nonprofit or proprietary/investor-owned). The distribution of database hospitals matches the distribution of AHA-registered U.S. hospitals in terms of the percentages of government (28 percent) and nongovernment (72 percent) hospitals.

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Region

Table 3-4 shows the distribution of database hospitals by AHA-defined geographic regions. The largest percentages of database hospitals are from the East North Central region (26 percent) followed by the West North Central region (22 percent). The database distribution under-represents Mid Atlantic/New England and West South Central hospitals, and over-represents the East North Central and West North Central hospitals compared to the distribution of AHA-registered U.S. hospitals.


1 To ensure hospital confidentiality, a rule was established requiring at least 20 hospitals to be in a particular breakout category before data would be displayed by that category. Therefore, some of the standard AHA categories have been combined. In addition, column percent totals in the tables may not sum to exactly 100 percent due to rounding of decimals.

2 Data for AHA-registered hospitals were obtained from the 2004 AHA Annual Survey of Hospitals Database, © 2007 Health Forum, LLC, an affiliate of the American Hospital Association. Hospitals not registered with the AHA were asked to provide information on their hospital's characteristics such as bed size, teaching status, etc.

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Current as of December 2012
Internet Citation: Chapter 3. Characteristics of Participating Hospitals: 2007 Comparative Database Report . December 2012. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/professionals/quality-patient-safety/patientsafetyculture/hospital/2007/hospdbch3.html