April 14, 2017

National report: Maine hospitals are No. 1 in patient safety

Leapfrog's patient-safety grades for Maine's 16 acute-care hospitals

The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade report only looked at Maine's 16 acute care hospitals. It does not rank critical access hospitals (which are roughly half the hospitals in Maine), long-term care and rehabilitation facilities, mental health facilities, surgical centers, free-standing pediatric hospitals or federal hospitals.

Here are the letter grades for each of the 16 Maine hospitals ranked in the spring 2017 report. To see a detailed report on how each hospital's grade was determined, go here.

Hospitals and grades:

  • Maine Coast Memorial Hospital, Ellsworth: A.

  • Eastern Maine Medical Center, Bangor: B

  • The Aroostook Medical Center, Presque Isle: A

  • St. Joseph Hospital, Bangor: A

  • Pen Bay Medical Center: A

  • Cary Medical Center, Caribou: A

  • Inland Hospital, Waterville: A

  • Mid Coast Hospital, Brunswick: A

  • MaineGeneral Medical Center, Augusta: A

  • Mercy Hospital, Portland: A

  • Maine Medical Center, Portland: C

  • St. Mary's Regional Medical Center, Lewiston: A

  • Central Maine Medical Center, Lewiston: B

  • SMHC Biddeford Medical Center, Biddeford: C

  • York Hospital, York: A

  • Franklin Memorial Hospital, Farmington: C

Source: Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade, spring 2017 report

Maine has the safest hospitals in the nation, according to the latest Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade report, which is the only national health care rating focused on errors, accidents and infections.

The Leapfrog Group, a nonprofit organization founded in 2000 by large employers and other purchasers to drive quality, safety and transparency in the U.S. health system, released on Wednesday its twice-a-year report on hospitals' patient safety performance.

The report 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. The findings are calculated by top patient safety experts, peer reviewed and are published on Leapfrog's website.

Maine is the only state to sustain its ranking as one of the top five states in the percentage of "A" graded hospitals since the Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade began in 2012.

Eleven of Maine's 16 acute care hospitals earned "A" safety grades in this spring's rankings. That puts Maine No. 1 in the top five states with the highest percentage of "A" hospitals this spring — followed by Hawaii, Oregon, Wisconsin and Idaho.

Of the 2,639 hospitals rated in this spring's report, 823 earned an "A," 706 earned a "B," 933 earned a "C," 167 earned a "D" and 10 earned an "F."

Five Maine hospitals in elite group

Five Maine hospitals are among 63 hospitals nationwide that have earned an 'A' grade from The Leapfrog Group since the reports began in spring 2012. That means the hospitals have received the highest possible grade 11 times in a row, including the 2017 update released on Wednesday.

Earning perfect safety grades since 2012 are:

  • Pen Bay Medical Center in Rockport
  • Mid Coast Hospital in Brunswick
  • Inland Hospital in Waterville
  • St. Mary's Regional Medical Center in Lewiston
  • Cary Medical Center in Caribou.

The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade is based on 30 national performance measures of patient safety that are collected and publicly reported by The Leapfrog Group and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Half of the measures are related to hospital processes, the other half to patient outcomes.

"When we launched the Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade in 2012, our goal was to alert consumers to the hazards involved in a hospital stay and help them choose the safest option. We also hoped to galvanize hospitals to make safety the first priority day in and day out," said Leah Binder, president and CEO of Leapfrog, said in a news release accompanying the latest report. "So far, we've been pleased with the increase in public awareness and hospitals' commitment to solving this terrible problem. But we need to accelerate the pace of change, because too many people are still getting harmed or killed."

Since its hospital safety program began in 2012, Leapfrog reports there has been a 21% decline in hospital-acquired conditions.


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