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Florida Hospitals Reducing Readmission Rates

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File photo of IV bags. (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)

File photo of IV bags. (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)

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MIAMI (AP) — Florida hospital officials say patients who have been hospitalized recently are 15 percent less likely to be readmitted as hospitals around the country try to improve quality and save money under the Affordable Care Act.

Tuesday’s report from the Florida Hospital Association comes five years after the state ranked among the worst in the nation for poor health outcomes and high costs.

Florida hospitals have saved $25 million in two years, prevented 1,500 readmissions at 107 hospitals and reduced bloodstream and urinary tract infections.

Medicare officials announced last year they would punish hospitals with hefty fines if they have too many readmissions within 30-days.

According to an analysis by Kaiser Health News, 135, or 80 percent, of Florida hospitals will be penalized.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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