New analysis from Blue Health Intelligence (BHI®) highlights Highmark and Washington Hospital

PITTSBURGH, Sept. 4, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Blue Health Intelligence (BHI®) recently recognized The Washington Hospital, located in Washington County, as a high performing facility in obstetrical care, by having one of the lowest rates of potentially avoidable complications (PACs) in the country. BHI analyzed health care claims data and identified The Washington Hospital as having the best year-over-year performance for pregnancy and delivery healthcare services based on the BHI Potentially Avoidable Complications (PAC) analysis, using the Health Care Incentive Improvement Institute's Evidence-based Case Rates Analytics (ECR Analytics®).

BHI evaluated services performed at Washington during a three-year period, from January 2008 through May 2011. During this time, Washington exhibited quality safety results, a low readmission rate and a competitive average cost of care. The close working relationship with Highmark Inc. and active participation in Quality Blue, Highmark's hospital pay-for-performance program, are also key factors that contributed to the high-performing facility recognition.

"Washington Hospital is taking excellent care of Highmark members and represents a tremendous value for members," said Carey Vinson, M.D., Vice President and Medical Director of Quality and Medical Performance Management at Highmark. "The data clearly shows they have low complication rates and high-quality safety results in obstetric care. The Washington Hospital has a model program that others can learn from."

Dr. Vinson also explained that Highmark is in a unique position because of its vast resources of hospital data that it collects in an effort to help facilities. "Working with Blue Health Intelligence and other partners, including hospitals, we want to regularly highlight successful programs and try to communicate this information with others, so best practices can be shared. This ultimately benefits all the stakeholders," said Vinson.

Officials from The Washington Hospital explain that its team of healthcare providers, physicians and hospital staff has been a driving force in emphasizing quality resulting in improved obstetric care. "Key steps in evidence based practice, infection prevention, and staff education have resulted in achieving even greater quality measures in obstetric care," explained Paul T. Cullen, M.D., Vice President, Medical Affairs at The Washington Hospital.

"BHI's analysis of Washington Hospital is an example of how BHI's analytics can help transform the healthcare system by delivering data-driven information about healthcare trends and best practices resulting in healthier lives and affordable access to safe and effective care," said Swati Abbott, BHI's Chief Executive Officer. "BHI congratulates Washington Hospital and Highmark for its continued efforts in delivering safe, quality care to its patients."

In addition to obstetric care, Washington Hospital is also capitalizing on excellent electronic capabilities. Integrated electronic medical records and computer systems are utilized in the hospital, outpatient locations, and physician offices. This provides team members throughout the system with access to patient information promoting communication between providers and enables proactive scheduling of diagnostic tests and procedures. Telemedicine communication access and capabilities are utilized as needed in the Emergency Department for stroke and pediatric patients; this technology is also available to the Critical Care Unit for evaluation of stroke patients.

SOURCE Highmark Inc.