These Missouri Hospitals Earned A ‘D’ Grade For Patient Safety
I've talked about the Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grades previously. Yet, when it comes to patient safety I didn't have a good grasp of how important that is until my wife spent several months battling health issues in three hospitals, a rehab hospital, a long-term acute care hospital, and four skilled nursing facilities. Unfortunately, many Missouri hospitals have some work to do to get better in the area of patient safety. Luckily, no hospital in Missouri got an "F", but two did get "D" grades. Keep reading to find out which hospitals need some work.
What Is A Hospital Safety Grade?
This isn't a measure of how smart the doctors at the hospital are. Or how many specialists are on the staff. Or what health problems the hospital is very good at treating. It's about how well hospitals prevent errors, injuries, accidents, and infections among their patients.
Additionally, Leapfrog's grade considers nurse communication, doctor communication, staff responsiveness, communication about medicine, and discharge information in their grade. Leapfrog says how well hospitals do this is closely associated with patient safety issues.
This is part of the safety grade that interested me, as weak discharge information caused problems related to my wife's care at skilled nursing facilities numerous times. Not to mention, my wife picked up at least one infection that put her back in the hospital.
According to Leapfrog, "Preventable medical errors, accidents, injuries, and infections in hospitals kill upwards of 200,000 people every year, the third leading cause of death in the United States. One in four people admitted to a hospital suffers some form of avoidable harm."
How Safe Are Missouri's Hospitals Overall?
Out of 63 general hospitals in Missouri assigned grades. 13 hospitals scored an "A" grade, 20 a "B" grade, 28 a "C" grade, and 2 a "D" grade. Overall 33 Missouri hospitals scored an "A" or "B" grade, while 30 Missouri hospitals underperformed with a "C" or a "D" grade.
In my mind when you have almost as many hospitals with a "C" or a "D" grade as receive an "A" or "B" grade, that, to me indicates we've got a problem with hospital safety.
What Missouri Hospitals Scored an "A" Safety Grade?
- Barnes-Jewish West County Hospital, Creve Coeur
- Centerpoint Medical Center, Independence
- Lee's Summit Medical Center, Lee's Summit
- Mercy Hospital Joplin, Joplin
- Mercy Hospital South, St. Louis
- Mercy Hospital Springfield, Springfield
- Mercy Hospital St. Louis, St. Louis
- Mercy Hospital Washington, Washington
- Progress West Hospital, O'Fallon
- Saint Francis Medical Center, Cape Girardeau
- Saint Joseph Medical Center, Kansas City
- Saint Luke's Hospital Kansas City, Kansas City
- St. Mary's Medical Center, Blue Springs
The Lowest Scoring Missouri Hospitals
Only seven percent of the hospitals surveyed by Leapfrog got a "D" grade, and less than one percent got an "F" grade. No hospital in Missouri received an "F", however, two hospitals received a "D" grade. Both are St. Louis area hospitals, South City Hospital and SSM Health Depaul Hospital St. Louis.
South City Hospital scored worse than average when it comes to C. diff infections; complications, and harmful events following surgery, childbirth, and procedures; and dangerous bed sores. Additionally, the hospital performed poorly when it came to practices that prevent errors and communication with patients and caregivers. You can check out the hospital's complete scores here.
SSM Health Depaul Hospital St. Louis scored worse than average when it comes to infections related to colon surgery, which can cause a long recovery in the ICU or death. Other serious surgical complications include internal bleeding and breathing problems. Additionally, the hospital scored worse than average when it comes to complications, and harmful events following surgery, childbirth, and procedures; as well as blood clots. The hospital also scored worse than average when it came to practices that prevent errors and communication with patients and caregivers. You can check out the hospital's complete scores here.
When it comes to patient safety, how hospitals deal with accidents, errors, injuries, and infections is important. Additionally, how doctors, nurses, and the staff communicate with each other and patients and caregivers is a good indicator of how likely a patient will suffer some complication or problem that results from receiving treatment for the issues that put them in the hospital to start with.
Overall, a "C" grade is more or less average. Unfortunately, when it comes to recovering from an illness or surgery that puts you in the hospital, average isn't good enough. While we've got some great Missouri hospitals, the odds are just as good you'll wind up at a "C" grade hospital than an "A" or "B" grade hospital.
To see what Leapfrog Safety Grade your hospital received and learn more about how they're grading system check out the Leapfrog Safety Grade website here.
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