MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A new report ranked Memphis-area hospitals based on patients’ risks of dying from medical mistakes, safety issues and infections.
National nonprofit Leapfrog Group graded 11 hospitals using two years' worth of medical data and safety measures.
This report card shows Memphis hospitals have made some improvement.
Leapfrog Group researchers said only 20 percent of these hospitals had ‘A’ or ‘B’ grades last year and now that number has gone up to 36 percent. But hospitals like Regional One Health have consistently gotten low scores.
These grades are based on how well these facilities protect their patients from medical accidents, harm and error during a hospital visit.
“We do this by taking 28 different measures of safety and calculating that into a single composite grade. Half the grade looks at the policies and procedures that hospitals have in place to prevent the errors and half of it looks at which how often errors actually happen in the hospital,” said Erica Mobley, director of operations at the Leapfrog Group.
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Some of those safety problems are patient falls, bed sores and air bubbles in the blood.
“Whether it’s trauma or open-heart surgery or stitches, anyone who gets transported to the hospital for any reason deserves to be safe,” said Mobley. “A lot of what we’re looking at really is important for all hospitals for to be doing regardless of the types of cases they see and the types of patients they treat.
“We recognize that some hospitals have a lot of challenges, and they treat a challenge population or may have budget challenges.”
In the report, six area hospitals received an ‘A’ or ‘B’. Saint Francis Hospital maintained ‘A’ rankings over the past couple of years and Methodist University Hospital improved from a ‘C’ a ‘B.’
But five Memphis-area hospitals were on the bottom.
Baptist Memorial Hospital of Memphis dropped from a ‘B’ to a ‘C’ and Regional One Health has consistently received Ds and Cs.
“When we see a hospital like that receiving very low grades, that’s an indication that they’re really not prioritizing patient safety,” said Mobley.
FOX13 reached out the American Hospital Association (AHA) about this latest report card.
Akin Demehin, director of quality policy at the AHA, said these grades must be interpreted with context.
“The recent double-digit percentage reductions in hospital-acquired conditions and healthcare-associated infections show that hospitals are making important strides in making care safer,” said Demehin in a statement. “For example, some of the data used to calculate hospital grades are more than two years old and may not reflect more recent performance improvement efforts.
“In addition, not all measures apply to all patients, which can matter when report cards are used as the primary tool to select a hospital for a specific procedure.”
You can review the full report card here. There, you can read an in-depth report on why each hospital received the grade it did.
FOX13 obtained statements from the following providers about their scores on this survey:
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