Latest Hospital Safety ScoresShow Incremental Progress in Patient Safety
New letter grades shift U.S. state rankings
Washington, DC, May 8, 2013 – When it comes to patient safety, all hospitals andU.S. states aren’t created equal, according to the newly updated Hospital Safety ScoreSM.The Spring 2013 update to the Hospital Safety Score that assigns “A,” “B,” “C,”“D” or “F” grades to more than 2,500 general hospitals in the United Statesshowed hospitals have made only incremental progress in addressing errors,accidents, injuries and infections that kill or hurt their patients. TheHospital Safety Score methodology is fully transparent and has been acceptedfor publication in the peer-reviewed Journal of Patient Safety.
The Leapfrog Group (Leapfrog),an independent, national nonprofit organization that administers the Score,confirms this has contributed to a shift in how the U.S. states are ranked forhospital safety. With 80 percent of its hospitals receiving an “A,” Maine edgedout Massachusetts as the number one state for safety. Joining Maine andMassachusetts in the “top five” ranking for number of “A” Scores are Minnesota,Virginia and Illinois.
In the U.S., roughly one infour of all hospitalized patients suffers some form of harm*. “Safety is a24/7, 365-day effort. This update of grades and accompanying change in staterankings should serve as a reminder that we are on an ongoing journey,” saysLeah Binder, president and CEO of Leapfrog. “Patient safety shouldn’t be merelya concern; it should be a priority. Everyone – including consumers, hospitals,patients, families of patients, unions and employers – has a role in improvingsafety in American hospitals.”
Individuals can check their local hospital’s HospitalSafety Score online or on the free mobile app at www.hospitalsafetyscore.org.They should discuss the Hospital Safety Score with their doctor and plan toremain vigilant, even in hospitals with “A” Scores. A full analysis of the dataand methodology used is available at www.hospitalsafetyscore.org.
The Hospital Safety Score is the only publicly accessiblestandard of hospital safety available free to the public. Calculated under theguidance of Leapfrog’s eight-member Blue Ribbon Expert Panel, the HospitalSafety Score methodology has been analyzed in the peer-reviewed Journal of Patient Safety. The Score uses 26 measuresof publicly available hospital safety data to produce a single graderepresenting a hospital’s overall success in keeping patients safe frominfections, injuries, and medical and medication errors. The panel includes:John Birkmeyer (University of Michigan), Ashish Jha (Harvard University),Arnold Milstein (Stanford University), Peter Pronovost (Johns HopkinsUniversity), Patrick Romano (University of California, Davis), Sara Singer (HarvardUniversity), Tim Vogus (Vanderbilt University), and Robert Wachter (Universityof California, San Francisco).
§ Of the 2,514 general hospitals issued a Hospital Safety Score,780 earned an “A,” 638 earned a “B,” 932 earned a “C,” 148 earned a “D” and 16earned an “F.”
§ A total of 1.9 percent of hospitals showed dramatic change intheir Hospital Safety Score, moving two or more grade levels up or down.Approximately 73.9 percent of hospitals maintained the same Score from November2012.
§ The states with the smallest percentage of “A” hospitals includeNevada, Kansas, Oregon, West Virginia and New Mexico, which holds the lowestpercentage at 6.7 percent.
§ The largest change in an individual safety measure was theComputerized Physician Order Entry (CPOE) measure, which rose from 29 to 34.CPOE technology reduces the number of errors related to handwriting ortranscription and provides error checking for incorrect doses and tests.
§ A range of hospitals earned “A’s,” with no one class ofhospitals (i.e., teaching hospitals, public hospitals, etc.) dominating amongthose showing the highest safety Scores. Hospitals earning an “A” includeacademic medical centers Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston and MayoClinic. Many rural hospitals earned an “A,” including Geisinger Medical Centerand Blessing Hospital.
§ Hospitals with myriad national accolades, such as DukeUniversity Hospital, earned an “A.”
§ “A” Scores were also earned by hospitals serving highlyvulnerable, impoverished and/or health-challenged populations, such as DetroitReceiving Hospital.
For more information about the Hospital Safety Score orto view the list of state rankings, please visit www.hospitalsafetyscore.org.Journalists interested in scheduling an interview with Leapfrog should contact LeapfrogMedia@sternassociates.com.
About The Leapfrog Group
The Hospital Safety Score is an initiative of The Leapfrog Group (www.leapfroggroup.org), a national nonprofit organizationusing the collective leverage of large purchasers of health care to initiatebreakthrough improvements in the safety, quality and affordability of health carefor Americans. The flagship Leapfrog Hospital Survey allows purchasers tostructure their contracts and purchasing to reward the highest performinghospitals. The Leapfrog Group was founded in November 2000 with support fromthe Business Roundtable and national funders and is now independently operatedwith support from its purchaser and other members.