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Somerset Medical Center has received an “A” rating for patient safety from The Leapfrog Group, an independent, national not-for-profit organization of employer purchasers of health care and the nation’s leading experts on patient safety. Only 27 percent of the 2,652 hospitals analyzed nationwide earned an “A” – the highest rating – in the Leapfrog Group’s first-ever release of Hospital Safety Scores.
“At Somerset Medical Center, patient safety is our top priority,” said Ken Bateman, president and CEO of Somerset Medical Center. “All of us are committed to doing everything we can do drive a culture of safety throughout our medical center, for our patients, their families and our employees.”
“We have made great strides in patient safety over the past several years and we are continually reviewing our processes and procedures to see what we can do better,” said Mary Bollwage, vice president of risk management and quality services at Somerset Medical Center. “Some of our recent patient safety initiatives include the implementation of new information technology systems to help reduce the risk of medication errors, a falls prevention program, enhanced infection prevention efforts, a rapid response team and an electronic event reporting and tracking system. We also hold ongoing education programs for our physicians and staff, including an annual patient safety symposium.”
Calculated under the guidance of a nine-member Blue Ribbon Panel of patient safety experts, the Hospital Safety Score uses 26 measures of publicly available hospital safety data to produce a single score representing a hospital’s overall performance in keeping patients safe from preventable harm and medical errors. Those 26 safety measures include falls and trauma, central line-associated bloodstream infection, pressure ulcers and preventable complications from surgery. The score also credits hospitals for their protocols and procedures known to prevent infections, errors and accidents, such as strong nursing leadership and engagement, hand hygiene policies, computerized physician order entry systems, safety-first organizational leadership and culture and the right level of staffing for the ICU.
The Hospital Safety Score reports only on general hospitals, not on specialized hospitals such as critical access hospitals or children’s hospitals. There is no score for hospitals that do not report enough data publicly, including hospitals in the state of Maryland and territories of Guam and Puerto Rico, which were exempted from the federal government from report. Many rural general hospitals did not report enough data to obtain a score.
For more information on the Hospital Safety Score and to review hospital scores, visit www.hospitalsafetyscore.org. To learn more about Somerset Medical Center’s patient safety initiatives, visit www.somersetmedicalcenter.com. For a physician referral, call 800-443-4605.