HealthGrades America’s 50 Best Hospitals for 2010 identified

The HealthGrades America’s 50 Best Hospitals for 2010 were identified in a report issued today by the leading independent healthcare ratings organization. The analysis, which examined objective patient outcomes over three years at all 5,000 of the nation’s nonfederal hospitals, found that the 50 Best Hospitals had mortality rates that were, on average, 27% lower than other hospitals.

“These hospitals are setting national benchmarks for excellence in clinical quality, and as we continue to debate health care reform, they should stand as institutions to be learned from and emulated”

To be identified in the annual report, hospitals must have had risk-adjusted mortality and complication rates that were in the top 5% in the nation for the most consecutive years, indicating sustained, outstanding patient outcomes. Individuals can see whether their local hospitals are among the 50 Best at www.healthgrades.com.

“These hospitals are setting national benchmarks for excellence in clinical quality, and as we continue to debate health care reform, they should stand as institutions to be learned from and emulated,” said Rick May, MD, a HealthGrades vice president and an author of the report.

Seventeen states have at least one HealthGrades America’s 50 Best Hospitals: Arizona (2), California (3), Colorado (1), Florida (9), Georgia (1), Illinois (3), Indiana (1), Kentucky (2), Maryland (1), Michigan (3), Missouri (1), New Jersey (1), Ohio (9), Pennsylvania (7), Tennessee (1), Texas (3) and Virginia (2).

The fourth annual report compared the HealthGrades America’s 50 Best Hospitals with all others and found:

  • If all hospitals performed at the level of the HealthGrades America’s 50 Best, 164,964 deaths and 18,900 inhospital complications could have potentially been prevented among the Medicare population over the three years studied.
  • Compared with all other hospitals, the HealthGrades America’s 50 Best had risk-adjusted mortality rates that were, on average, 26.96% lower and risk-adjusted inhospital complication rates that were 8.29% lower.
  • For some procedures and treatments, the variation was much wider. For treatment of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, the 50 Best hospitals had, on average, 44.52% lower risk-adjusted mortality, and for treatment of Pneumonia the 50 Best hospitals had, on average, 40.25% lower risk adjusted mortality.

Full procedure-by-procedure comparisons of the HealthGrades America’s 50 Best Hospitals and all others can be found in the report at http://www.healthgrades.com.

For this analysis, mortality or complication rates were evaluated for the following 26 procedures and treatments:

  • Back and Neck Surgery (Spinal Fusion)
  • Back and Neck Surgery (except Spinal Fusion)
  • Bowel Obstruction
  • Carotid Surgery
  • Cholecystectomy
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  • Coronary Bypass Surgery
  • Coronary Interventional Procedures (Angioplasty and Stents)
  • Diabetic Acidosis and Coma
  • Gastrointestinal Bleed
  • Gastrointestinal Surgeries and Procedures
  • Heart Attack
  • Heart Failure
  • Hip Fracture Repair
  • Pancreatitis
  • Peripheral Vascular Bypass
  • Pneumonia
  • Prostatectomy
  • Pulmonary Embolism
  • Resection/Replacement of Abdominal Aorta
  • Respiratory Failure
  • Sepsis
  • Stroke
  • Total Hip Replacement
  • Total Knee Replacement
  • Valve Replacement Surgery

Methodology

In this analysis, HealthGrades independently and objectively analyzed approximately 130 million Medicare patient records from fiscal years 1999 through 2008 for 26 medical procedures and conditions. To be included in the analysis, hospitals must have met minimum thresholds in terms of patient volumes, quality ratings, and the range of services provided. Prior to comparing the inhospital mortality and complication rates of the nation’s hospitals, HealthGrades risk-adjusted the data to compare on equal footing hospitals that treated sicker patients. Hospitals with risk-adjusted mortality and complication rates that scored in the top five percent or better nationally and who received this designation for at highest number of consecutive years were recognized as America’s 50 Best Hospitals. HealthGrades’ methodology can be found in the study on the company’s Web site.

As with all HealthGrades ratings and awards, all nonfederal hospitals in the U.S. are evaluated. No hospital can opt-in or opt-out of participating in the independent evaluation.

Source HealthGrades

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