Hawkins County Memorial Achieves Four Stars in New Centers for
Medicare & Medicaid Services Ratings
Aug. 5, 2016 – Hawkins
County Memorial Hospital’s delivery of superior care to the community has
caught the eye of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, which has
given the facility a high score in newly released ratings.
The 50-bed hospital has earned four out of a maximum five
stars in the federal agency’s Overall Hospital Quality Star Rating system. This
tally, based on examination of 64 health care measures reported to the U.S.
government, is the best score achieved by a hospital in Hawkins County
Memorial’s service area.
Scores in this area, which includes Hawkins, Greene, Hancock
and Hamblen counties, range from one star to four stars. CMS said the
ratings help patients and their families learn about the quality of hospitals,
compare facilities and ask important questions about quality of care when
visiting a health care setting.
“The outcome of this nationwide evaluation reflects the
diligence of our physicians and other medical professionals to produce optimal
results for our patients, as is illustrated in our score,” said Rebecca Beck,
Hawkins County Memorial’s president. “In serving residents of Hawkins County
and nearby communities who have a variety of health needs, our providers are
repeatedly demonstrating our hospital is the go-to facility for patients seeking
high-quality care. Their performance has been extraordinary.”
CMS said the new star system is designed to help people
compare hospitals in an understandable way and is an extension of efforts the
federal agency has made in the last decade to publish information about the
quality of care available in the five most frequently encountered health care
The rating summarizes data from quality measures reported on
Hospital Compare, which is a consumer-oriented website CMS operates to share
how well hospitals provide care to their patients. Through this site, people
can compare performance measures among hospitals so they can make informed
decisions about health care.
The 64 measures by which the hospitals were measured by CMS
were divided into seven groups – mortality, safety of care, readmissions,
patient experience, effectiveness of care, timeliness of care and efficient use
of medical imaging.
One of the highlights for Hawkins County Memorial was 75
percent of patients giving the hospital an overall score of 9 or 10, with a 10
classified as the best score possible. This percentage was higher than the
state and national average.
The CMS ranking is the latest recognition the hospital has
earned based on patient perspective. For the last four years, CareChex®, a
division of Comparion® Medical Analytics, has selected Hawkins County Memorial
among the top 10 percent in the nation for patient satisfaction in overall
hospital care, overall medical care and overall surgical care.
“When patients come to our hospital for care, they are
experiencing a vulnerable moment in their lives,” said Ravan Krickbaum,
chairwoman of the hospital’s board of directors. “We are focused on providing
the best possible experience that enables them to heal in a comfortable
environment surrounded by highly skilled caregivers. That commitment permeates
the hospital and assures the community we are prepared to help them improve
Another highlight in the CMS review was the hospital’s care
for patients in the emergency department. Data show the average amount of time
patients spent in the emergency department before being discharged without
admission was more than 20 minutes faster than the state average and nearly 30
minutes sooner than the national average for low-volume hospitals. And the
average amount of time patients spent in the emergency department before they
were admitted as an inpatient was 15 minutes less than the state average and 30
minutes less than the national average in that same category of hospitals.
The ranking from CMS continues a trend of national
recognition for Hawkins County Memorial. In recent months, Truven Health
Analytics chose Hawkins County as one of the top 100 hospitals in the country,
listing it among 20 small community hospitals in its 2016 rankings. The company
also picked Hawkins County Memorial one of the 17 winners of the Everest Award,
which honors hospitals among the 100 that have attained the highest current
performance and fastest long-term improvement over five years.
Plus, Hawkins County Memorial has been named to iVantage
Health Analytics’ list of the Top 100 Rural and Community Hospitals in 2016.
The National Rural Health Association used that data to pick Hawkins County
Memorial as one of its Top 20 rural Community Hospitals for 2016.
In addition to these organizations, an industry publication
has recognized Hawkins County Memorial for its efforts. Becker’s Hospital
Review in 2015 named Hawkins County Memorial as one of the 49 hospitals in the
nation with the best staff-to-patient medicine explanation practices. The
publication also named Hawkins County Memorial in 2014 among the 43 hospitals
in the United States with the cleanest patient rooms and in 2013 as one of the
56 hospitals with the best pain management.
Hawkins County Memorial provides a comprehensive suite of
services, including surgery and inpatient care. The hospital’s emergency
department is available 24/7, and the facility also provides multiple
state-of-the-art outpatient services, such as CT scanning, nuclear medicine and
digital mammography. Plus, Hawkins County Memorial operates an inpatient and
outpatient physical therapy program.
As a member of Wellmont
Health System, Hawkins County Memorial also works collaboratively with other
hospitals in the organization should a patient need a higher level of care.
“Hawkins County Memorial is a jewel in our community
hospital division and sets an example for others to follow in the delivery of
exceptional patient care,” said Eric Deaton, Wellmont’s chief operating
officer. “We are fortunate to have expert physicians and dedicated staff
members who live their calling as health care professionals. We’re proud to
serve residents of Hawkins County and those who live in nearby communities and thank
them for placing their trust in our care.”