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Published on November 08, 2018

Quality and Patient Safety Remain Focus of Medical Center

MidMichigan Medical Center – Gratiot earned a ‘B’ in patient safety from The Leapfrog Group for the Fall 2018 Hospital Safety Grade. Those interested in viewing the full grades may visit www.hospitalsafetygrade.org. The Hospital Safety Grade is the gold standard rating for patient safety, compiled under the guidance of the nation’s leading patient safety experts and administered by The Leapfrog Group, a national patient safety watchdog.

“We are so pleased to once again earn a “B” from Leapfrog – an organization that sets some of the highest standards in health care,” said Marita Hattem-Schiffman president, MidMichigan Medical Center – Gratiot and MidMichigan Medical Center – Mt. Pleasant. “Each year we transparently report on all aspects of our patient safety performance in detail and learn through Leapfrog how our performance compares to the best in the nation. We celebrate our successes and also adopt new best practices as a result.”

Areas of success since the Spring 2018 Leapfrog grade have included the achievement of full points for Computerized Physician Order Entry (CPOE), as well as many areas of safe practices such as hand hygiene, fall prevention, and ensuring strong teamwork.

According to Hattem-Schiffman, the team anticipated areas of opportunity and has made great strides since the last Leapfrog data collection period.

One such effort included offsetting a weakness in the bar code medication administration system. To ensure patient safety, Medical Center nurses and pharmacists have strengthened the process in place to reconfirm that each patient does not have an allergy to a medication that has been ordered. Another area of focus has been physician staffing in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).

“For the time period measured by the Leapfrog survey, we had one physician certified in critical care medicine; however, a second physician has joined our team, moving us toward Leapfrog’s high expectations,” said Hattem-Schiffman. “In addition, hospital -based physicians are in house 24 hours per day, 7 days per week and respond immediately to the critical care needs of our patients.”

In addition to the areas of bar code medication administration and physician staffing in the ICU, MidMichigan Medical Center – Gratiot is continuously improving handwashing practices.

“Many of our infection-related measures are scored as “N/A” because we had too few cases to calculate a result,” Hattem-Schiffman shared. “However, C. difficile infections are an area we are particularly focused on. We found opportunities to strengthen our documentation and have developed new testing procedures for C. diff.”

Developed under the guidance of an Expert Panel, the Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade uses 27 measures of publicly available hospital safety data to assign A, B, C, D and F grades to approximately 2,500 U.S. hospitals twice per year. It is calculated by top patient safety experts, peer-reviewed, fully transparent and free to the public.

“Success at creating an excellent patient experience is more than a list of honors, scores and awards; the recognition is just a small part of the big picture of quality efforts that never stop,” Hattem-Schiffman concluded. “As our organization continues to grow, the bar is raised with the focus set on quality and safety. Our efforts have resulted in better outcomes for our patients and have helped improve our overall performance. Our patients are the number one reason we focus on quality.”

About The Leapfrog Group

Founded in 2000 by large employers and other purchasers, The Leapfrog Group is a national nonprofit organization driving a movement for giant leaps forward in the quality and safety of American health care. The flagship Leapfrog Hospital Survey collects and transparently reports hospital performance, empowering purchasers to find the highest-value care and giving consumers the lifesaving information they need to make informed decisions. The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade, Leapfrog’s other main initiative assigns letter grades to hospitals based on their record of patient safety, helping consumers protect themselves and their families from errors, injuries, accidents, and infections.