Decade's 'top hospitals' announced by Leapfrog

The University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore and Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle have been named "Top Hospitals of the Decade" by The Leapfrog Group for their innovations in patient safety and quality and reducing medical errors. The two facilities received the honor for being the only two hospitals in the nation to consistently perform in the top ranks of the 1,200 hospitals that participate in Leapfrog's annual survey, notes Health Data Management.

"The new era of healthcare reform is going to require providers, insurers, employers and others to work together as never before to improve the quality and efficiency of care," said David Knowlton, Leapfrog Group board chairman and president of the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute. "Hospitals such as the University of Maryland Medical Center and Virginia Mason Medical Center chose to blaze that trail long ago by committing themselves to change, accountability and transparency."

The survey, which began in 2001, measures hospital performance in areas such as mortality rates for high-risk procedures, resources used to care for patients measured by length of stay and readmission rates, proper staffing of intensive care units with specialists and use of computerized physician order entry systems.

UMMC completed full implementation of computerized order entry (CPOE) three years ago, and since then has met--and in several cases exceeded--all of Leapfrog's performance criteria for CPOE, reports UMB News.

Hospitals that participate in the annual survey include large academic medical centers, children's hospitals, and community acute-care institutions in urban, suburban and rural areas.

For more:
- check out the Leapfrog press release
- read the Health Data Management article
- read the UMB News article