What Makes This Website Different?
Free and easy-to-use, Cal Hospital Compare features quality and performance information on California hospitals to help healthcare consumers make smarter and more informed choices when making medical decisions. Cal Hospital Compare firmly believes that by making this information publicly available, we will improve the health care system.
Cal Hospital Compare is not commercial, so consumers can be assured:
- The site is always free to use and offers fully open access
- The information is objective and unbiased
- Consumers are not required to register or provide any contact information
- Consumers will not receive persistent emails or be contacted by phone
- Consumers won’t see advertising or promotion of one provider over others
Who Is Behind This Website?
Cal Hospital Compare is a performance reporting initiative managed by a multi-stakeholder Board of Directors, with representatives from hospitals, purchasers, health plans, and consumer groups – for details see the Our Team page. Cal Hospital Compare, formerly known as the California Hospital Assessment Task Force (CHART) prior to 2016, was first established in 2004 for the purposes of developing a statewide hospital performance reporting system using a multi-stakeholder collaborative process. Cal Hospital Compare uses only publicly available data sources for all hospitals to ensure all California hospitals are represented on this website. This work is supported by California Health plans.
To produce the information on this website, we partner with these respected entities:
For details on the roles each partner plays, see the Ratings & Data Sources page.
Cal Hospital Compare updates the website data on a quarterly basis – April (Q1), July (Q2), October (Q3), January (Q4).
Cal Hospital Compare History
Public information about health care quality is hard to come by, sometimes not objective, and often difficult to understand. Early on the California Health Care Foundation (CHCF) saw an overwhelming need to make such information available and recognized that providing the information online is the most effective path.
- In 2002, CHCF first began publishing ratings of nursing homes online at the site “California Nursing Home Search” (CalNHS.org). In December 2004, CHCF added similar profiles and ratings of home health care agencies and hospice services. And in September 2005 the site was expanded to include congregate living health facilities, assisted living, continuing care retirement communities, adult day health care programs, and adult day care centers.
- Around that time, CHCF also embarked on a new effort to report on the quality of care in California hospitals; however, not much data existed. So hospitals and insurers agreed to voluntarily start collecting key data on medical outcomes. In 2007, CHCF began aggregating the new data with existing sources and launched www.CalHospitalCompare.org to provide performance report cards for participating hospitals.
- In 2009, CHCF launched CalQualityCare.org, upgrading and updating the California Nursing Home Search site based on in-depth research conducted among key audiences, including consumers and long-term care providers.
- In 2014, CHCF combined all these resources into one unified place — at CalQualityCare.org.
- In October 2016, CHCF transitioned ownership of the hospital portion of CalQualityCare.org to a multi-stakeholder, non-profit entity, Cal Hospital Compare.
- In January 2017 and 2018, Cal Hospital Compare released a California Hospital C-section Honor Roll to identify hospitals that met or surpassed a federal target aimed at reducing Cesarean births (C-sections) for first-time mothers with low-risk pregnancies. The California Health and Human Services Agency (CHHS) announced the achievement awards to hospitals on behalf of Smart Care California.
- Cal Hospital Compare currently publishes three annual honor rolls – the Maternity Care Honor Roll, Patient Safety Honor Roll and Opioid Care Honor Roll.
- In late 2023, the Cal Hospital Compare website began reporting psychiatric measures for both hospitals and stand-alone facilities.