President Recognizes Sharp HealthCare With 2007 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award at White House

WASHINGTON, D.C. and SAN DIEGO, April 23 /PRNewswire/ -- President George W. Bush personally recognized Sharp HealthCare today with the 2007 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award at a private event at the White House. Sharp HealthCare is one of only five organizations in the country, and the only one in California, to receive the 2007 Baldrige Award, the nation's highest Presidential honor for quality and organizational performance excellence.

(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20080423/LAW553)

Following the President's reception, Sharp representatives received the award from Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez in a ceremony held in conjunction with the Baldrige program's annual Quest for Excellence Conference. The Quest for Excellence Conference provides a forum for Baldrige Award recipients to showcase their exceptional performance practices and share their journeys to excellence with interested businesses and organizations from around the country and the world.

"The Baldrige criteria and our unwavering commitment to quality, satisfaction and continuous improvement have helped us toward our vision to be the best place to work, practice medicine and receive care," said Mike Murphy, President and CEO of Sharp HealthCare, which is one of the largest health care systems in Southern California. "We believe we are changing health care for the better, and the Baldrige evaluation process and recognition have fanned the flames of enthusiasm to continue on our quest."

At the forefront of Sharp's commitment to excellence is The Sharp Experience, a sweeping performance improvement initiative launched in 2001. This initiative has resulted in numerous advances in clinical outcomes, patient safety enhancements and organizational and service improvements. These include best-practice blood sugar control in patients with diabetes; technological innovations for patient safety; sustained improvements from use of Lean Six Sigma; employee turnover rates well below the industry average; physician satisfaction consistently in the top decile nationwide; and significantly improved patient satisfaction across the entire Sharp system.

In addition to receiving the 2007 Baldrige Award, Sharp HealthCare was the first health care system to be named a gold-level award recipient by the California Council for Excellence (CCE) for the California Awards for Performance Excellence (CAPE) program, the state-level affiliate of the Baldrige Award, in 2006.

Sharp HealthCare Named 2007 Baldrige Recipient

Last November, Sharp and the other 2007 Baldrige Award recipients were selected from among 84 applicants. All of the applicants were evaluated rigorously by an independent board of examiners in seven areas: leadership; strategic planning; customer and market focus; measurement, analysis and knowledge management; human resource focus; process management; and results. The evaluation process for the 2007 Baldrige Award recipients included about 1,000 hours of review and an on-site visit by teams of examiners to clarify questions and verify information in the applications.

About Sharp HealthCare

Ranked as the number-one integrated health care system in California by Modern Healthcare, Sharp HealthCare is San Diego's most comprehensive health care delivery system. It is recognized for clinical excellence for services in cardiac, cancer, and multiorgan transplantation, as well as orthopaedics, rehabilitation, behavioral health and women's health. The Sharp system includes four acute-care hospitals, three specialty hospitals, three affiliated medical groups and a health plan. To learn more about Sharp, visit http://www.sharp.com.

SOURCE Sharp HealthCare

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