CR medical centers score high in safety

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March 28, 2014 | 12:22 pm

By Garth Bowen and Bonnie Pisarik

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Congratulations to Mercy Medical Center of Cedar Rapids for getting an A on the most recent national Hospital Safety Scores.

Other greater Iowa hospitals receiving an A were Genesis Medical Center, Davenport; Trinity Medical Center at Terrance Park, Bettendorf; Grinnell Regional Medical Center, Grinnell; Mary Greeley Medical Center, Ames; Mercy Medical Center, Dubuque; Spencer Municipal Hospital, Spencer; St. Marys, Rochester, Minn.; and Mayo Clinic Methodist, Minn.

Cedar Rapids St. Lukes received a B. The University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics received a C as did Mercy Hospital, Iowa City.

The Hospital Safety Score graded more than 2,600 hospitals across the U.S. and comes from The Leapfrog Group, which used an analysis of infections, injuries, and medical and medications errors that frequently cause harm or death during a hospital stay.

The Leapfrog Group worked under the guidance of a nine-member expert panel to select measures and develop the scoring methodology. The panel is made up of patient safety experts from across the country. For more information on the Hospital Safety Score, or to find out the score of your hospital, visit www.hospitalsafetyscore.org

It is estimated that medical mistakes cost the U.S. $17 billion per year. According to a recent report in Health Affairs, as many as one-third of hospital visits lead to hospital-related injuries. These types of injuries can increase the risk of complications and patient death.

This breakthrough event by The Leapfrog Group in public reporting of Hospital Safety Scores promises to improve patient safety in Iowa hospitals and others across the United States. Unfortunately, it has been under reported so far by Iowas news media.

The next set of Hospital Safety Scores is to be released in April. This free, public information is too important to be overlooked and is a valuable resource for hospital patients and their loved ones.

Garth Bowen and Bonnie Pisarik, both of Cedar Rapids, are co-chairs of the Iowa Health Buyers Alliance (www.ihbaonline.org), an association of health care consumers and purchasers working toward better health, health care and value. The Hospital Safety Score is an initiative of The Leapfrog Group (www.leapfroggroup.org), a national non-profit organization, launched in 2000, that uses the collective leverage of large purchasers of health care to initiate improvements in and affordability of health care. Comments: paceia@aol.com

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