The Leapfrog Group on Monday released its Fall Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grades, giving about one-third of hospitals an "A" grade, but giving more than 40% of hospitals a "C" or lower.
For the fall 2020 report, Leapfrog assigned "A" to "F" letter grades to general acute-care hospitals in the United States based on up to 27 outcome measures that represent medical errors, accidents, injuries, and infections. To calculate the ratings, the group primarily used data from CMS and the Leapfrog Hospital Survey.
In a release, Leapfrog noted that "[w]hile the data does not yet include findings collected during the height of Covid-19, [it] offers an indication of how well hospitals implemented fundamental safety precautions prior to the pandemic, an important factor in preparedness." According to Leapfrog, "future updates will incorporate pandemic response periods."
The Leapfrog ratings, which are updated twice a year, focus on acute-care hospitals. The ratings do not cover facilities such as critical access hospitals, certain specialty hospitals, and federal hospitals because those facilities lack certain publicly available data.
Of the 2,622 hospitals ranked in the latest report:
- 895 earned an "A";
- 631 earned a "B";
- 910 earned a "C";
- 170 earned a "D"; and
- 16 earned an "F."
To see how your hospital fared, visit Leapfrog Group's website.
According to the Leapfrog Group, 29 hospitals have earned an "A" in every update since the rankings inception in spring 2012.
When ranked by state, Maine has the highest share of "A" hospitals, followed by:
- Massachusetts; and
By contrast, the states with the lowest share of "A" hospitals are Alaska, North Dakota, and South Dakota, which all tied for the 49th spot on the ranking. Those states were preceded by West Virginia at 48, and Nebraska at 47.
Leapfrog CEO Leah Binder in a release said, "We see in the news every day the extraordinary courage of clinicians and staff caring for patients stricken by Covid-19," but the latest ratings highlight the "the untold efforts" hospitals take "behind the scenes to protect patients."
Binder continued, "Hospitals' commitment to the fundamentals, like preventing infection, ensuring universal hand hygiene, and double- and triple-checking everything to avoid errors have saved lives too" (Rodriguez, USA Today, 12/14; Leapfrog release, 12/14; Leapfrog Group methodology, accessed 12/14; Leapfrog explanation of grades, accessed 12/14).