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March 17, 2022

The top 448 hospitals for patient safety in 2022, according to Healthgrades

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    Healthgrades on Tuesday released its annual listof the top hospitals for patient safety, recognizing 448 hospitals that provided quality care while preventing serious harm during hospital stays.

    Cheat sheets: See how Healthgrades calculates its ratings


    For the list, Healthgrades evaluated inpatient data from the Medicare Provider Analysis and Review (MedPAR) file on 14 patient safety indicators (PSIs) defined by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). Each PSI represents a serious complication that is potentially preventable, such as the rate of in-hospital falls resulting in hip fractures and/or postoperative sepsis.

    For this year's list, Healthgrades analyzed all short-term acute care hospitals in the MedPAR file from fiscal years 2018 to 2020. To calculate patient safety ratings, the organization looked at diagnosis and procedure codes.

    In 13 of the 14 indicators, Healthgrades used the AHRQ WinQI software to predict the number of patient safety incidents that were likely to occur at a given hospital based on the types of patients treated at that hospital.

    To be eligible for the award, hospitals had to meet certain clinical quality thresholds, have zero instances in which a foreign object was left behind during a procedure, and have data on at least seven out of eight core PSIs.

    Notably, Healthgrades in its 2022 list opted to exclude Covid-19 patients from the AHRQ analysis because the organization did not "believe that the presence of Covid-19 on patient records can be adequately risk-adjusted in the 2020 data year." Going forward, Healthgrades said it would assess Covid-19's impact "on an ongoing basis."

    Click here for the full list of award recipients.

    Patient safety 'is at the forefront of hospital leaders and consumer minds alike'

    In the analysis, Healthgrades identified 170,231 potentially preventable PSIs among Medicare patients in U.S. hospitals. According to Healthgrades, four safety indicators made up 74% of all PSIs:

    • In-hospital fall resulting in hip fracture (22.2%)
    • Collapsed lung resulting from a procedure or surgery (21.1%)
    • Pressure sores or bed sores (15.3%)
    • Catheter-related bloodstream infections (15%)

    On average, Healthgrades found that 100,189 PSIs could have been avoided if all U.S. hospitals performed similarly to the award recipients.

    In fact, Healthgrades found that patients who received care in the hospitals awarded for patient safety fared better than those treated at hospitals that did not receive the award. On average, patients at the top 448 hospitals for patient safety were:

    • 55.8% less likely to experience an in-hospital fall that results in hip fracture
    • 52.6% less likely to experience a collapsed lung as a result of a procedure or surgery in or around the chest
    • 66.2% less likely to experience pressure sores or bed sores during their stay
    • 65.8% less likely to experience catheter-related bloodstream infections during their stay

    "With the continued influx of patients into our health care systems due to the Covid-19 pandemic, patient safety and exceptional care is at the forefront of hospital leaders and consumer minds alike," said Brad Bowman, CMO and head of data science at Healthgrades. "Patient Safety Awareness Week is the perfect time to highlight the hospitals who have been recognized with a Healthgrades 2022 Patient Safety Excellence Award, as we know consumers need to feel confident about the care they receive."

    "Factors like hospital quality, safety, experience, and outcomes are extremely important but oftentimes consumers aren't aware they have access to this information when it comes to picking a hospital or doctor for your medical care," said Burt Kann, EVP and head of product at Healthgrades. "Our purpose at Healthgrades is to arm patients with the tools and information they need to make the best decisions for themselves and their family." (PR Newswire, 3/15; Bean, Becker's Hospital Review, 3/15; Healthgrades Patient Safety methodology, 11/15/2021)

    Cheat sheets: How hospital quality ratings work


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