The Intersection of Healthcare and Geopolitics: Exploring the HCAHPS Survey and China's Presence in Cuba

Ben H.

Hatched by Ben H.

Jun 28, 2023

4 min read


The Intersection of Healthcare and Geopolitics: Exploring the HCAHPS Survey and China's Presence in Cuba


In a world where healthcare and geopolitics are intertwined, two seemingly unrelated topics have emerged that shed light on the complexities of these interconnected realms. The Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) Survey, a nationwide survey measuring patients' perspectives of hospital care, has revolutionized the way we evaluate healthcare quality. At the same time, a recent revelation regarding China's secret agreement with Cuba to establish an electronic eavesdropping facility poses a new geopolitical challenge to the United States. By exploring these two seemingly disparate topics, we can gain valuable insights into the intricacies of healthcare and the global landscape.

The Significance of HCAHPS:

Since its inception in 2008, the HCAHPS Survey has allowed for valid comparisons of hospitals' performance locally, regionally, and nationally. With its standardized and publicly reported nature, this survey has become a vital tool in assessing patients' perceptions of their hospital experiences. The addition of HCAHPS Star Ratings by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in 2015 further simplified the information for consumers, enabling them to make informed choices about healthcare providers. The HCAHPS Summary Star Rating, which combines the 10 HCAHPS measure star ratings, provides a comprehensive overview of a hospital's quality of care. Moreover, the HCAHPS Survey plays a significant role in CMS's Hospital Value-Based Purchasing program, linking hospital payments to performance on quality measures. The Person and Community Engagement domain, which accounts for 25% of a hospital's Total Performance Score, is based on HCAHPS data.

China's Geopolitical Maneuvers in Cuba:

Meanwhile, China's secret agreement with Cuba to establish an electronic eavesdropping facility presents a brazen challenge to the United States. The undisclosed facility, aimed at monitoring U.S. communications, signifies China's escalating presence in the Western Hemisphere. U.S. officials familiar with highly classified intelligence suggest that China has agreed to provide several billion dollars to cash-strapped Cuba in exchange for the construction of the eavesdropping station. This development has raised concerns among politicians and experts who believe that the Biden administration must acknowledge and address the growing Chinese threats at America's doorstep.

The Convergence of Healthcare and Geopolitics:

While the HCAHPS Survey and China's activities in Cuba may seem unrelated at first glance, they converge at the intersection of healthcare and geopolitics. Both highlight the significance of national interests, strategic alliances, and the pursuit of influence in different domains. Moreover, they underscore the need for comprehensive assessments of healthcare quality and a nuanced understanding of the global landscape. By recognizing these commonalities, we gain a broader perspective on the complexities that shape the healthcare industry and global power dynamics.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Stay Informed: In an increasingly interconnected world, it is crucial to stay informed about both healthcare developments and geopolitical affairs. By actively seeking out reliable sources of information, individuals can better understand the implications of these intersecting forces and make informed decisions about their healthcare choices.
  • 2. Advocate for Transparency: Transparency in healthcare is essential for patients to assess the quality of care provided by hospitals. By advocating for greater transparency and publicly reported surveys like HCAHPS, individuals can contribute to the improvement of healthcare systems and hold healthcare institutions accountable for their performance.
  • 3. Engage in Geopolitical Discourse: By actively engaging in discussions and debates surrounding geopolitical affairs, individuals can contribute to a more informed public discourse. This engagement can lead to a better understanding of the complexities of global power dynamics and potentially influence policy decisions that impact both healthcare and geopolitics.


The convergence of healthcare and geopolitics is a testament to the interconnected nature of our world. The HCAHPS Survey and China's presence in Cuba serve as reminders that healthcare quality and geopolitical maneuvering are not isolated realms but rather deeply entwined forces. By recognizing the commonalities between these seemingly disparate topics, we gain valuable insights into the complexities that shape our healthcare systems and the global landscape. As individuals, we have the power to stay informed, advocate for transparency, and engage in geopolitical discourse to contribute to a more holistic understanding of these intricate dynamics.

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