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Lehigh Regional achieves patient safety award

By Special to The Citizen - | May 19, 2021

Lehigh Regional Medical Center has been recognized as a Healthgrades 2021 Patient Safety Excellence Award recipient. PHOTO PROVIDED

news@breezenewspapers.com

Lehigh Regional Medical Center, a member of Prime Healthcare, has been recognized as a Healthgrades 2021 Patient Safety Excellence Award recipient.

This distinction places Lehigh Regional Medical Center among the top 5 percent of all short-term acute care hospitals reporting patient safety data as evaluated by Healthgrades, a marketplace connecting patients and providers.

“We are proud to receive this excellence award for the third time. This award demonstrates our Staff and Physician commitment to patient safety. Our goal is to provide a safe environment for our patients,” said Cheryl McIntire, Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Lehigh Regional Medical Center, in a prepared statement.

Prime Healthcare has more Patient Safety recipient hospitals than any health system nationwide for six years in a row (2016-2021), system officials said.

From 2017 through 2019, there were 190,273 potentially preventable patient safety events among Medicare patients in U.S. hospitals. If all hospitals, as a group, performed similarly to hospitals performing better than expected on each of 13 Patient Safety Indicators (PSIs) evaluated by Healthgrades, on average, 106,052 patient safety events could have been avoided.

“The importance of hospital quality is now at the forefront of consumer’s minds, especially as we continue to navigate COVID-19. We congratulate the recipients of the Healthgrades 2021 Patient Safety Excellence Award for their ongoing commitment to upholding the highest quality standards for their patients and communities,” said Brad Bowman, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Healthgrades, in a prepared statement.

During this time frame, four patient safety indicators accounted for 72% of all patient safety events (collapsed lung, hip fracture due to an in-hospital fall, pressure or bed sores and catheter-related bloodstream infections). Healthgrades found that patients treated in hospitals receiving the Healthgrades 2021 Patient Safety Excellence Award were, on average:

n 50.3 percent less likely to experience a collapsed lung due to a procedure or surgery in or around the chest, than patients treated at non-recipient hospitals.

n 60.3 percent less likely to experience an in-hospital fall resulting in hip fracture, than patients treated at non-recipient hospitals.

n 66.5 percent less likely to experience pressure sores or bed sores acquired in the hospital, than patients treated at non-recipient hospitals.

n 65.4 percent less likely to experience catheter-related bloodstream infections acquired in the hospital, than patients treated at non- recipient hospitals.

“This is the third year in a row that Lehigh Regional Medical Center received the Healthgrades Patient Safety Excellence award,” a release from the system states. “This award validates the exceptional care that our staff provides every day and showcases the hospitals commitment to patient safety. We also have a multidisciplinary team that meets regularly to identify opportunities to improve patient safety and implements best practice strategies to ensure safe patient care.”

During the study period (2017 through 2019), Healthgrades 2021 Patient Safety Excellence Award recipient hospitals demonstrated excellent performance in patient safety within the Medicare population, as measured by objective outcomes–risk-adjusted patient safety indicator (PSI) rates–for 13 PSIs defined by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). A 14th PSI is included in the evaluation – Foreign Objects Left in Body During a Surgery or Procedure – which is a “never” event and does not have an expected rate.

Statistics are calculated from Healthgrades Patient Safety Ratings and Excellence Award methodology which is based primarily on AHRQ technical specifications (Version 2020.0.1) to MedPAR data for years 2017 through 2019 and represent three-year estimates for Medicare patients only.

About Lehigh Regional Medical Center

Lehigh Regional Medical Center is accredited by The Joint Commission with the Gold Seal of Approval as an 88 bed acute care facility. The state-of-the-art hospital provides specialty care services that include Emergency Services, Cardiology, Critical Care, Gastroenterology, General Surgery, Nephrology, Orthopedics, and Patholody, delivering patient-centered healthcare with dignity and respect for all.