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SSM Health Care: A leader in quality patient care 
ST. LOUIS (8/1/2012) — SSM Health Care hospitals, across four Midwest states, received top quality scores in HealthInsight’s annual “National Rankings for Hospitals” released last week. The hospital quality report is unique among lists on hospital performance in that its rankings are based on the same quality data that the federal government uses to grade hospitals.

 “We are pleased to see that our journey to continuously improve quality and patient experience is being noticed at a regional and national level by organizations that are tasked with monitoring health care quality,” said Gaurov Dayal, M.D., chief medical officer of SSM Health Care. “Our caregivers take great pride in our tradition of consistently delivering the very best in quality health care.”

In Missouri, St. Mary’s Health Center in Jefferson City took gold, ranking number one in quality for the entire state. St. Francis Hospital and Health Services, a rural community hospital in Maryville, received the state’s fourth place ranking.

In the St. Louis region, the five SSM Health Care adult hospitals swept their competitors, rating as the metro area’s top five quality hospitals. Within the state, SSM St. Joseph Hospital West in Lake Saint Louis ranked seventh, SSM DePaul Health Center in Bridgeton and SSM St. Mary’s Health Center in Richmond Heights tied for eleventh place, SSM St. Joseph Health Center in St. Charles rated thirteenth, and SSM St. Clare Health Center in Fenton tied a competitor for the fourteenth position in Missouri.

In Illinois, St. Mary’s Hospital in Centralia took bronze, rating third in quality in the state. Its sister hospital in Mount Vernon, Good Samaritan Regional Health Center ranked eighteenth in the state. Both hospitals far outpaced any competitors in the region.

In Oklahoma, St. Anthony Hospital in Oklahoma City, which includes St. Anthony Bone and Joint Hospital, was the top ranked full-service, acute-care hospital in the metro region. Within the entire state, St. Anthony scored an impressive fifth in quality. In seventh place for the state is the newest hospital in the SSM Health Care system – St. Anthony Shawnee Hospital (formerly known as Unity Health Center) located in rural Shawnee.

In Wisconsin, St. Clare Hospital in Baraboo was tied for eighth in quality in the state. St. Mary’s Hospital in Madison was placed twenty-fifth in the state, though it took silver honors within the Madison metro area. The report does not include a ranking for St. Mary’s Janesville Hospital, which opened in January 2012. 

“We have a deeply rooted culture of continuous improvement and our mission calls us to provide exceptional patient care each and every day,” said Paula Friedman, SSM Health Care senior vice president of strategic development.

Why is the HealthInsight.org report important?

Many well-known organizations, such as U.S. News & World Report, publish rankings on American hospitals. However, few of the organizations use the same quality metrics as the federal government, or they weight quality metrics low in a hospital’s overall performance score.

Many published reports will use a small, random selection of physicians, often working in allegiance to a regional health system, to grade the reputation of hospitals.  Another method used is to grade hospitals on the availability of high-end, specialty services that are often only available at large academic hospitals, which hurts the scores of rural and community hospitals providing otherwise high quality care in communities.

Additionally, many organizations rating hospitals require a large fee in order to promote and advertise a hospital’s position on the list. In contrast, HealthInsight.org requires no money to promote its findings, is readily available to the public and clearly defines what and how data was used to compile the ranking order.

How does the federal government grade hospitals?

Across the nation, the federal government grades hospitals on the following metrics:

    1. The results of patient satisfaction surveys, known as HCAHPS
    2. Readmission rates: number of patients who return to the hospital within 30 days
    3. Mortality rates: deaths within 30 days of hospitalization for any of the conditions tracked by core quality measures
    4. Core quality measures for heart attacks (AMI), heart failure (CHF), pneumonia (PN) and surgical infection prevention (SCIP).

The data used for this HealthInsight.org report is from Oct. 1, 2010 through Sept. 30, 2011 for quality measures and patient satisfaction and from July 1, 2008 through June 30, 2011 for 30-day readmission and mortality scores.

Here is an overview of how SSM Health Care’s 16 adult hospitals scored within their state:

Illinois Hospital Quality Rankings (out of 181 hospitals ranked)

3rd                    St. Mary’s Hospital, Centralia 
18th                  Good Samaritan Regional Health Center, Mount Vernon


Missouri Hospital Quality Rankings (out of 109 hospitals ranked)
1st                    St. Mary’s Health Center, Jefferson City
4th                    St. Francis Hospital and Health Services, Maryville
7th                    *SSM St. Joseph Hospital West, Lake Saint Louis
(tie)            *SSM DePaul Health Center, Bridgeton
(tie)           *SSM St. Mary’s Health Center, Richmond Heights 
13th                        *SSM St. Joseph Health Center, St. Charles
(tie)            *SSM St. Clare Health Center, Fenton 

               *Denotes part of SSM Health Care – St. Louis

Oklahoma Hospital Quality Rankings (out of 128 hospitals ranked)

5th                    St. Anthony Hospital, which includes Bone and Joint Hospital at St. Anthony   
7th                    St. Anthony Shawnee Hospital (formerly known as Unity Health Center)

Wisconsin Hospital Quality Rankings (out of 128 hospitals ranked)

8th (tie)              St. Clare Hospital, Baraboo 
25th                  St. Mary’s Hospital, Madison 
n/a                   St. Mary’s Janesville Hospital, Janesville
(opened in January 2012 after data collected)

About SSM Health Care
SSM Health Care is a Catholic, not-for-profit health system with an international reputation as a pioneer in the use of quality measures to improve care. With 6,500 physicians and more than 24,000 employees in four states, SSM is one of the largest employers in every community it serves. It is located in Wisconsin, Oklahoma, Illinois and Missouri. In every region, SSM facilities forge creative relationships in the community to foster healthier people and healthier neighborhoods. Through these relationships and at its various sites, SSM serves nearly 1.5 million people annually.

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