Wellmont Hospitals Earn High Marks Again On Patient Safety From Independent Research Group

An independent research firm has again given Wellmont Health System hospitals high marks for patient safety.

Takoma Regional Hospital in Greeneville received an "A" grade from The Leapfrog Group, a nonprofit organization that promotes transparency and value-based hospital incentives. Bristol Regional Medical Center and Holston Valley Medical Center in Kingsport each received a "B."

"Patients rely on hospitals for healing, and Wellmont is committed to making ours safe so they can focus on improving," said Tracey Moffatt, Wellmont's chief operating officer. "The Leapfrog Group review not only confirms our hospitals are acting correctly, but it provides valuable information as we seek to further enhance our safety initiatives."

The Leapfrog Group's evaluation, called the Hospital Safety Score, is based on survey information provided on 26 patient safety measures. Some data used to determine scores are voluntarily submitted by hospitals. Other data sets are public and available from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

Holston Valley, Bristol Regional and Takoma Regional received exceptional scores for their leadership structures and systems, nursing work force, risk and hazard identification and mitigation, medication reconciliation, hand hygiene, care of ventilated patients and antibiotic usage.

Holston Valley and Bristol Regional were also recognized for physician staffing in the intensive care unit. Takoma Regional earned high scores for its computerized provider order entry system and postsurgical care.

The Hospital Safety Score evaluates 2,500 hospitals across the nation and releases scores quarterly. Wellmont's hospitals have consistently received above average grades. Even so, Moffatt said Wellmont constantly seeks ways to enhance the patient experience at its hospitals.

"We place a high value on scores from The Leapfrog Group," Moffatt said. "It's just one of several measures we used to guide our operations and improve the overall patient experience."

Leapfrog also ranks states based on hospital performance. Virginia ranked fourth nationally, with 44 percent of evaluated hospitals collecting an "A." Tennessee ranked 12th,with 34 percent of evaluated hospitals receiving an "A."

To see individual hospital scores, please visit www.hospitalsafetyscore.org.