Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Pretty Good Company…

Grinnell Regional Medical Center was recently named one of the nation’s top hospitals according to The Leapfrog Group. In fact, GRMC is only one of five rural hospitals around the country to achieve The Leapfrog Group’s top rural hospital status for 2010.

Traveling with me to attend the annual meeting of The Leapfrog Group was Susan Witt, chair of the GRMC board of directors, and Dr. Laura VanCleve, president of the GRMC medical staff. After receiving the award on behalf of GRMC, we reflected on this extraordinary accomplishment.

First and foremost, we are all extremely proud of the women and men who achieved this recognition for GRMC. Led by Suzanne Cooner, the entire GRMC team is committed to the providing patient services that are of high quality, focused on patient safety, and at the lowest cost possible.

We also noted that GRMC was named with some very impressive company. Other hospitals recognized as “top hospitals” by The Leapfrog Group include some of the icons of healthcare institutions in our country, such as all three Mayo Clinic Hospitals in Minnesota, Florida, and Arizona; 16 Kaiser Permanente Hospitals and the Stanford Hospitals and Clinics in California; Beth Israel and the Brigham and Women’s Hospitals in Boston; the University of Michigan Health System; Sentara in Virginia; and Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C., just to name a few!

Finally, we were impressed with the focus on quality care and patient safety. This is the hallmark of The Leapfrog Group. One of the “Founding Frogs” is Lucian Leape, MD, an internationally recognized patient safety guru and Harvard professor. Leapfrog’s expert panel includes Peter Pronovost, MD, PhD, critical care physician and professor at Johns Hopkins; David Bates, MD, a practicing internist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard professor; John Brinkmeyer, MD, a surgeon with the University of Michigan Medical School; and Charles Denham, MD, founder of the Texas Medical Institute of Technology and patient safety expert. There is little doubt these folks are some of the best minds focused on improving healthcare in hospitals today.

The educational sessions we attended were geared 100 percent toward patient safety and improved quality. They made it clear that although much has been accomplished over the first ten years of The Leapfrog Group in encouraging standard setting and transparency, there is still much to do. They pledged that each year, their standards would become more widespread and demanding as they push for even greater performance for healthcare in our country.

This recognition is such a team effort. Every member of the staff must be giving their best to provide the level of care and safety that this kind of recognition merits. Of course, medical and nursing staff fit that bill most openly, but it includes everyone who supports them, too. At GRMC, we truly strive for a culture of quality and safety and this recognition acknowledges everyone’s hard work to make it a reality.

You can learn more about The Leapfrog Group at their website.

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