HealthGrades Names Top Hospitals for Emergency Medicine

- Patients Admitted to Top Hospitals for Emergency Medicine Have 40% Lower Death Rate -

DENVER, Feb. 21, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- A report released today by HealthGrades, the leading provider of information to help consumers make an informed decision about a physician or hospital, identified the nation's top performing hospital for emergency medical care. The analysis also found large differences in the risk adjusted mortality rates for patients admitted through the Emergency Department, both by hospital and by market area. 

The findings are based on an analysis of more than seven million Medicare patient records from 2008 to 2010. HealthGrades Emergency Medicine in American Hospitals report analyzed patients admitted to the hospital through the emergency department for the following 12 diagnoses:

  • Bowel Obstruction
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease        
  • Diabetic Acidosis and Coma     
  • Gastrointestinal Bleed 
  • Heart Attack
  • Heart Failure
  • Pancreatitis
  • Pneumonia
  • Pulmonary Embolism
  • Respiratory Failure 
  • Sepsis 
  • Stroke

The HealthGrades report included only those patients admitted to the hospital from the emergency room for further medical treatment, representing the full continuum of a patient's care. Those 263 hospitals performing in the top five percent in the nation were designated as Emergency Medicine Excellence Award™ hospitals. A full listing of these hospitals, by city, can be found online at

"It is imperative that anyone experiencing a medical emergency go directly to the closest hospital, especially in the event of a heart attack or stroke," said Dr. Arshad Rahim, report author and Director of Accelerated Clinical Excellence at HealthGrades. "That said, our study findings show the care you receive once admitted to the hospital can also make the difference between life and death. We encourage all patients to educate themselves about the quality of emergency medical providers in their area and to choose a top performing hospital whenever there is a choice."

Other key findings of HealthGrades Emergency Medicine in American Hospitals include:

  • HealthGrades found that from 2008 to 2010, emergency room admissions for heart attack were down  1.7% and stroke admissions were up 2.2% among Medicare recipients.
  • For the group of patients studied, Emergency Medicine Excellence hospitals had, on average, 41.52% lower risk-adjusted mortality than all other hospitals across the 12 diagnoses studied.
  • If all hospitals performed at the level of the Emergency Medicine Excellence hospitals from 2008 through 2010, an additional 170,856 people could have potentially survived their emergency hospitalization.
  • HealthGrades found that over 61% of hospital admissions among seniors begin in the emergency department, higher than any other age group.
  • Roughly 36% (94 out of 263) of the Emergency Medicine Excellence hospitals are located in eight DMAs: Chicago, IL (18); Los Angeles, CA (15); Baltimore, MD (12); Cleveland, OH (12); Phoenix - Prescott, AZ (12); St. Louis, MO (9); Cincinnati, OH (8); Detroit, MI (8).
  • The top 10 cities with the lowest risk-adjusted mortality for patients admitted through the emergency department —are Milwaukee, WI; Phoenix - Prescott, AZ; Cincinnati, OH; West Palm Beach, FL; Baltimore, MD; Traverse City, MI; Dayton, OH; Cleveland, OH; Fargo, ND; Detroit, MI;

HealthGrades' Hospital Ratings

In this analysis, HealthGrades independently and objectively analyzed approximately seven million Medicare patient records from fiscal years 2008 through 2010. To be included in the analysis, hospitals must have met minimum thresholds in terms of patient volumes, quality ratings, and the range of services provided. Individuals may compare their local hospitals online at HealthGrades' hospital ratings are independently created; no hospital can opt-in or opt-out of being rated, and no hospital pays to be rated.

About HealthGrades

HealthGrades, headquartered in Denver, Colorado, is a leading provider of comprehensive information about physicians and hospitals. More than 200 million consumers use the HealthGrades websites, including and, to research, select, and connect with a physician or hospital, and use its comprehensive information about clinical outcomes, patient satisfaction, patient safety, and health conditions to make more informed healthcare decisions and take action. Find more information about our products and services at Follow us on Twitter (@HealthGrades) and Facebook for news and updates. More information on how HealthGrades guides Americans to their best health can be found at

SOURCE HealthGrades