Newswise — For the second time this year, all three Rush hospitals — Rush University Medical Center, Rush Oak Park Hospital and Rush-Copley Medical Center — have received an ‘A’ grade, the highest possible, from the Leapfrog Group, a nonprofit patient safety watchdog organization. Leapfrog announced the latest round of its twice-yearly safety grades Oct. 31, awarding A grades to 832 hospitals out of the 2,632 in the United States that it evaluated for their commitment to reducing errors, infections, and accidents that can harm patients.
Rush University Medical Center in Chicago and Rush-Copley Medical Center in west suburban Aurora now have received A grades in each of the 12 times the Leapfrog Group has rated hospitals since launching the organization’s Hospital Safety Score in June 2012 — putting them among an exclusive group of 59 (2.2 percent) hospitals receiving grades that have earned the top score every time. Rush Oak Park Hospital, in the near west suburb Oak Park, received its third consecutive A and its fifth overall.
“It’s both obvious and enormously important that hospitals shouldn’t do things that negatively impact patients’ health. At Rush, we focus intently on safety, and we’ve developed programs to strengthen our safeguards against medical errors and hospital-acquired infections,” said Dr. Larry Goodman, CEO of the Rush system, which includes the three hospitals. Goodman also is CEO of Rush University Medical Center.
“That all three Rush hospitals now have received A’s from the Leapfrog Group three times in a row shows that our commitment to patient safety is deeply embedded in our culture throughout the Rush system.”
Rush University Medical Center programs that promote patient safety have set aggressive targets for improvement. Rush’s Good Catch program each month honors staff who have identified a system or process issue that has the potential of harming a patient, giving them an award and gift certificate.
”We have been laser focused on reducing avoidable patient harm,” says Dr. Richa Gupta, vice president, performance improvement and operational effectiveness and chief quality officer at Rush University Medical Center. “With our daily management system, we are identifying opportunities for improvement and engaging our staff closest to patient care to reduce harm every day.”
Combining personal touch with rigorous safety practices
Leapfrog used 27 measures of publicly available hospital data to assign scores of A, B, C, D or F. The score represents each hospital’s overall performance in keeping patients safe from preventable medical errors, accidents, injuries and infections while they are in the hospital.
“Rush Oak Park Hospital is honored to again receive an ‘A’ grade for patient safety from Leapfrog Group. It speaks to the consistent quality of our care and the commitment of our staff,” said Bruce Elegant, president and CEO of Rush Oak Park Hospital. “The recognition further solidifies our reputation of being a top community hospital with the technology and medical expertise of a major university medical center.”
“We are pleased to be recognized once again by Leapfrog for our strong culture of safety,” said Barry C. Finn, president and CEO of Rush Copley Medical Center and executive vice president of the Rush system. “We continually strive to provide the highest standards of safety and compassion to our patients. These ratings are a result of the extraordinary care and commitment of the physicians and staff of the Rush system.”
A-level care saves lives
An analysis conducted for Leapfrog found that an estimated 206,021 avoidable deaths occur in hospitals in the United States each year, and that an estimated 33,439 lives could be saved annually if all hospitals performed as well as A-rated hospitals such as Rush University Medical Center. The study also found that the risk of avoidable death was 9 percent higher in B hospitals than A hospitals, and rose to 35 percent higher in C hospitals and 50 percent higher in D and F hospitals. Johns Hopkins Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality provided the analysis in the spring of 2016, using that period's round of safety grade data.
The Leapfrog Group compiles the Hospital Safety Score under the guidance of the nation’s leading experts on patient safety in order to provide the public with information that people can use to protect themselves and their families. A full analysis of the data and methodology used is available on the Hospital Safety Score website.
To see Rush’s scores as they compare nationally and locally, and to find safety tips for patients and their loved ones, visit the Hospital Safety Score website.
A grades are the latest in steady stream of honors for Rush
The Leapfrog safety scores are the latest in a consistent stream of honors for Rush University Medical Center and the other Rush system hospitals that are unique among U.S. academic health systems, including the following recognitions:
- Rush University Medical Center ranked fourth among 107 leading academic medical centers in the United States, up from fifth last year, in a national study conducted by the health care services company Vizient. It was the fifth consecutive time Rush has been ranked among the top five in the annual Quality and Accountability Study and the ninth time since the University HealthSystem Consortium, now part of Vizient, began the study in 2005.
- U.S. News & World Report ranked eight programs at Rush University Medical Center among the best in the country in the latest edition of its annual “Best Hospitals” issue.
- Both Rush Copley Medical Center and Rush Oak Park Hospital received the Leapfrog Group’s Top Hospitals designation (which is different from Leapfrog’s safety grade) in December 2016.
- Rush University Medical Center and Rush Oak Park Hospital each have received four stars from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ Hospital Compare overall rating. Both have been rated four stars in each quarter since July of 2016, when CMS began issuing the overall rating.
- Rush University Medical Center received its fourth consecutive Magnet designation, the highest honor in nursing, in January 2016, and Rush Oak Park Hospital received Magnet status in March of that year.
- This March, the Human Rights Campaign — a civil rights organization that advocates for equality for people who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and/or queer/questioning — named Rush University Medical Center a Leader in LGBT Health Equality for the ninth consecutive year. The HRC also named Rush Oak Park Hospital a leader for the fourth consecutive year.
- Rush has been named one of the best hospitals to work for by indeed.com and topped the list of nurse.org’s Best Hospitals in Illinois for Nurses.
- Rush University Medical Center and Rush Oak Park Hospital repeatedly have been named among the Most Wired hospitals in the nation.
- Rush University Medical Center and Rush Oak Park Hospital both have received the Healthgrades Outstanding Patient Experience Award, which recognizes hospitals that provide an overall outstanding patient experience. Healthgrades evaluates patient experience performance by applying a scoring methodology to 10 patient experience measures, using data collected from the 32-question survey of the hospital’s own patients. Hospitals in the top 15 percent with the highest overall patient experience scores are recognized as Outstanding Patient Experience Award recipients.