The stress of a serious injury or illness can be heightened by not knowing which hospital is the best choice for your care. To make that process a little easier for people, the Leapfrog Group–in conjunction withThe Johns Hopkins Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety–publishes Hospital Safety Grades twice each year for thousands of hospitals across the country. These hospital ratings are the only ones that focus exclusively on patient safety, scoring hospitals on how safe they keep their patients from injuries, infections, accidents, and errors. The Hospital Safety Grades are a valuable tool that you can use to make sure you or a loved one is getting the safest care available when confronted with health issues.
The grades, which are peer-reviewed and published, rely on a panel of safety experts, national performance measures, and surveys to assign a grade to each hospital. The letter grades represent the hospital’s overall performance and ability to keep patients safe from preventable injuries and medical errors. The A, B, C, D, or F grades give consumers a quick way to choose the best hospital for their medical care.
Why is this so important? Because preventable hospital errors are a huge cause of death in the US. Depending on which study you look at, between 160,000 and 400,000 people die each year from preventable hospital mistakes. And patients at D and F hospitals face a 92% greater risk of dying from safety problems than patients at an A-rated hospital. While most hospitals do have a safety grade, they are not required to have one. If a hospital does not have enough safety data to supply Leapfrog with, they will not be given a grade. To find out how your safe your hospital is, see the list below.