Health IT company Axial Exchange has launched an online index ranking how well hospitals engage their patients in their care.

Florida is the first state for Axial’s Patient Engagement Index; the Raleigh company said that Florida was chosen because its demographics are a bellwether for the rest of the nation. Hospitals are ranked according to independent third party measures of how hospitals lower costs and improve patient outcomes. Indices for other regions will launch in coming months.

Patient engagement can come in for form of interactive tools that inform patients or encourage them to take their medicine as directed. Hospitals were measured by in three categories: “personal health resources,” which means providing access to health information via the Internet, mobile applications or interactive tools; social engagement on social media; and patient satisfaction.

“In an Internet era where rising deductibles are driving patients to closely examine health care choices – and where consumers rate physicians online like they do with restaurants and plumbers – we believe that publishing a quantitative measure such as a Patient Engagement Index can spotlight those forward-thinking health care systems that are succeeding in empowering patients to get well – and point the way for others,” Axial Exchange CEO Joanne Rohde said in a statement.

Axial develops health IT software. Among the company’s offerings is an application that coordinates patient information across an array of devices including smartphones, tablets and desktop computers.