If you think there’s nothing you can do about the rising cost of health care, you’re wrong.

Minnesota is one of the few states that provides a comprehensive and detailed report on quality of care measures at hundreds of clinics across the states. Hospitals are also ranked.

The Minnesota Community Measurement’s annual health care quality report was released Thursday and a Free Press report provided a summary of some of the most relevant measures for cost and quality of care at local clinics.

Minnesota Community Measurement is a community nonprofit established in 2005 to provide consumers fair, useable and accurate ways to compare cost and quality by health care providers across the state. Its goal is to “empower health care decision makers with meaningful data to drive improvement.”

Minnesota is a leader in this kind of consumer driven health care. The reports cause health care providers to examine their procedures, find ways of delivering services with better outcomes at lower costs.

Two of the major health care providers in Mankato received above average rankings in some areas, according to the latest report. Mankato Clinic was one of nine clinics to be above average in at least 50 percent of the measures. The clinic scored significantly above average in three of six areas of chronic condition care. And it scored significantly above average in seven of eight metrics related to mental health screenings and depression care.

Mayo Clinic Health System was one of nine medical groups that scored significantly above average in 50 percent of the preventive measures. Those involved breast and cervical cancer screenings and child immunizations.

Still, there’s work to be done at clinics here and around the state on, for example, adult diabetes care. The average for all clinics on diabetes care where their condition was “well controlled” was just 50 percent. Local clinics were about average or slightly above in that measure.

We encourage consumers to review the performance of their local clinics and hospitals and put important questions to them and your insurance provider.

You can check on the quality and cost ratings of your local clinic at http://www.mnhealthscores.org/

As health care becomes more costly and treatments become more expensive, it’s important consumers play a role in keeping costs in check through their judicious use of health care and decisions on choosing providers.

Health care providers can use the report to re-examine their procedures and change to produce better outcomes at lower cost.

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