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According to Kaiser Health News, ninety percent of CT’s acute care hospitals will be assessed a penalty by Medicare because of high readmission rates, starting October 1st. 54% of US hospitals will be penalized this year for the percent of Medicare patients with certain conditions who return to the hospital within 30 days, down slightly from last year. As for last year, CT is second highest among states in the percent of hospitals facing penalties, behind only NJ. CT’s rate of penalized hospitals has changed little since last year, however the average penalty per hospital jumped from 0.22% last year to 0.66% of revenue this year. This year the highest penalty rate goes to Milford Hospital, followed by Middlesex and Johnson Memorial. Experts estimate that half of readmissions could be prevented by improving care including more clear discharge instructions, coordinating with community providers, and reducing complications during hospital stays. Other quality-based Medicare hospital bonuses and penalties will also begin in October.