According to a story by Steve Sternberg and Geoff Dougherty posted to US News and World Report on 5.18.15:
These large numbers of low-volume hospitals, the analysis found, continue to put patients at higher risk even after three decades of published research have demonstrated that patients are more likely to die or suffer complications when treated by doctors who only occasionally see similar patients rather than by experienced teams at hospitals with more patients and established protocols.
WHY IT MATTERSPatients at thousands of hospitals face greater risks from common operations, simply because the surgical teams don't get enough practice. One of the benefits of consolidation in the healthcare industry may be in the area of patient safety.
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