West Florida Hospital October 31, 2017

West Florida Healthcare is the area’s only hospital to have earned an “A” rating during the Fall 2017 reporting period and to have earned this rating five consecutive times in a row.           

Pensacola, FL - The Leapfrog Group, a national nonprofit health care ratings organization, today released new Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grades. The Safety Grade assigns letter grades of A, B, C, D and F to hospitals nationwide based on their performance in preventing medical errors, infections and other harms. West Florida Healthcare was one of 832 in the country and the only hospital in Escambia and  awarded an “A” for its commitment to keeping patients safe and meeting the highest safety standards in the U.S.

According to the study, there were 2,632 hospitals graded, 832 earned an “A,” 662 a “B,” 964 a “C,” 159 a “D” and 15 an “F”. In all, it was found that 33,459 lives could be saved if B, C, D and F hospitals improved their patient safety record to that achieved by A hospitals. Additionally, compared to an “A” hospital a patients risk of dying in a hospital increases as the safety grade decreases:

            B         –          8.5%

            C                    35.2%

            D&F               49.8%

West Florida Healthcare is proud to be the only hospital in Escambia and Santa Rosa Counties to have earned an “A” in this elite national rankings program, recognizing their strong commitment to patient safety. To make this accomplishment even more impressive, this is the fifth consecutive time that West Florida Healthcare has earned an “A” rating. As further evidence of their commitment to patient safety and quality care, West Florida Healthcare is also the only area hospital to have earned the “100 Top Hospital in the Nation” by Truven Health Analytics for three years in a row.

“It takes consistent, unwavering dedication to patients to achieve the highest standards of patient safety. An ‘A’ Safety Grade recognizes hospitals for this accomplishment,” said Leah Binder, president and CEO of The Leapfrog Group. “We congratulate the clinicians, Board, management and staff of West Florida Healthcare for showing the country what it means to put patient safety first.” 

To achieve this high patient safety rating over five reporting periods, West Florida Healthcare has remained focused on transforming the health care experience. The vision is for highly – competent professionals to work in a collaborative environment to provide patient and family –centered care using evidence-based clinical practice standards. This collaborative team of nurses, physicians, support staff and volunteers are all committed to the patient and family-centered model of care, which has resulted in consistently high patient experience scores. In addition, the West Florida Hospital culture of safety and safe practice is embedded throughout the entire organization.

“Our mission states, above all else, West Florida Healthcare is committed to the care and improvement of human life, so we view this “A” rating as a result of our dedicated nurse, employees, physicians and volunteers living out that mission everyday.” said Carlton Ulmer, president and CEO of West Florida Healthcare. “In keeping with that mission, our team has created a special program called the C.A.R.E.S. Program, which focuses on quality, safety, and customer satisfaction. Through C.A.R.E.S, we emphasize the communication, accountability, respect, excellence and safety in all of our encounters with patients and family members.

Another important factor is the professional development support that West Florida Hospital provides for their nurses. For example, they have created a nursing structure that includes, Shared Governance, a model that features unit-based and facility clinical practice councils. Examples of these councils include; the nurse quality council, the nurse executive council, the fall prevention committee, the nursing patient satisfaction committee, and the nursing peer review committee, all of which meet on a regular basis to discuss how to improve patient quality and patient satisfaction.

By creating multidisciplinary teams, West Florida Healthcare has dedicated itself to serving as the quality leader in Northwest Florida by supporting the use of valid, reliable data to assure the delivery of optimal patient care to reduce medical errors. These multidisciplinary teams of physicians, nurses, clinicians, educators and support staff who follow evidence-based care practices, process improvement techniques, and systems are able to enhance the patient’s quality of care.

Developed under the guidance of a Blue Ribbon National 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 more than 2,600 U.S. hospitals twice per year. It is calculated by top patient safety experts, peer reviewed, fully transparent and free to the public.

To see West Florida Healthcare’s full grade, and to access patient tips for staying safe in the hospital, visit www.hospitalsafetygrade.org and follow the Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade on Twitter and Facebook.

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.