December 4, 2012

Vanderbilt again leaps onto hospital quality list

Vanderbilt University Hospital and the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt are among the nation’s 89 Leapfrog Top Hospitals for 2012.

Vanderbilt University Hospital and the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt are among the nation’s 89 Leapfrog Top Hospitals for 2012.

Only three Tennessee hospitals made the list.

The Leapfrog Group is a coalition of public and private purchasers of employee health coverage that works to encourage health care safety, quality and affordability. Leapfrog members provide health benefits to more than 34 million Americans spread among all 50 states, accounting for $62 billion in annual health care expenditures.

Leapfrog’s Top Hospitals list is based on an annual hospital safety and quality survey, which this year took in some 1,200 of the nation’s approximately 5,800 registered hospitals.

“Recognition from Leapfrog again this year is further acknowledgment of the skill, diligence and dedication exhibited every day by our faculty and staff,” said C. Wright Pinson, MBA, M.D., deputy vice chancellor for Health Affairs and CEO of the Vanderbilt Health System.

“As we deepen our commitment to patient care safety and quality, this recognition can only help focus our efforts by knowing that outside groups like Leapfrog have great interest in our continued progress and have found our patient care to be exemplary.”

Leapfrog has published these unranked lists since 2006. This is the sixth time VUH has been included and the third time that Children’s Hospital has been included.

“This recognition from the payer community is a very welcome reminder that, to a large degree, the value of our work is to be measured in clinical quality, reliability and safety,” said David Posch, CEO of Vanderbilt University Hospital and Clinics.

Luke Gregory, CEO of Children’s Hospital, said, “We’re very pleased to receive this recognition, a further testament to the hard work and dedication of our faculty and staff. Improving the quality of care is central to all that we do at Children’s Hospital. Congratulations to all.”

Leapfrog’s list comprises three categories: urban generalist/adult, pediatric and rural. Different criteria apply to each category.

VUH and the 65 other urban generalist/adult hospitals on the 2012 list:

• Meet standards for computer physician order entry systems that help prevent medication errors;

• Meet stringent performance standards for at least half of the complex high-risk procedures done in the hospital;

• Meet intensive care unit staffing standards that ensure ICU patients are cared for by specially trained doctors;

• Score at least 69 (out of 100) in “value” according to a cost-to-quality scale devised by Leapfrog;

• Have earned the top grade of “A” for safety.

Children’s Hospital and the other 11 pediatric hospitals on the 2012 list achieved a quality score of 90 or better (out of 100), based on excellence in medical error prevention, physician staffing in intensive care units and prevention of hospital-acquired infections.