By FOX 5 Atlanta Digital Team, Fox 5 Atlanta —
ATLANTA – The Leapfrog Group has released the eagerly awaited fall 2023 Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grades. These grades serve as a critical benchmark, shedding light on preventable medical errors, accidents, injuries, and infections that collectively claim more than 500 lives daily in the United States. This year’s rankings carry particular significance as they are the first to reflect post-pandemic hospital performance.
Georgia, as a whole, made a commendable leap, ranking 21st in the country for the percentage of “A” hospitals, a substantial improvement from its 31st position in the spring of 2023.
In total, 79 hospitals in Georgia were evaluated, with 24 hospitals achieving an “A” grade, 17 earning a “B,” 34 securing a “C,” and 4 falling into the “D” category. Fortunately, none of the hospitals received an “F” grade.
However, the major hospitals in downtown and Midtown Atlanta were not among those that received A grades.
Grady Memorial Hospital and Emory University Hospital Midtown both received a C grade. Piedmont Hospital on Peachtree Road received a B.
Grady Memorial also received a C for Spring 2023 and Fall of 2022. Before that, it received two D grades.
Emory University Hospital Midtown improved from a D in Spring 2023. It’s most recent highest grade was a B in Fall 2021.
Piedmont Hospital has received a B for the last 4 grading periods. It received A’s in Spring 2021 and Fall 2020.
Emory St. Joseph’s Hospital on Peachtree Dunwoody Road and Southern Regional Medical Center in Riverdale received A grades. Wellstar Kennestone Medical Center in Marietta and Emory Johns Creek Hospital also received A grades.
While the recent grades revealed significant reductions in three dangerous healthcare-associated infections (HAIs), there was cause for concern regarding the decline in patient experience reports. Liz Coyle, the executive director of Georgia Watch, expressed the shared sentiment of many, stating, “Nobody wants patients to suffer or even die from a preventable medical error, but sadly it happens all too often in hospitals across the country. We are very glad to see five additional Georgia hospitals earned an ‘A’ in the latest state rankings and appreciate their commitment to improve patient safety. Employers and purchasers in our coalition believe everyone benefits when we know how hospitals are doing, and Georgia consumers can make informed decisions about their healthcare.”
Despite the immense challenges posed by the pandemic, it is heartening to see the significant reduction in infections. Leah Binder, the president and CEO of The Leapfrog Group, applauded the hospitals in Georgia for their dedicated efforts in this regard. However, Binder acknowledged that many hospitals have not fully rebounded, as indicated by the declining patient experience measures. Nevertheless, she commended the hospitals in Georgia for their clear commitment to prioritizing patient welfare.
The Leapfrog Group boasts a rich history spanning over a decade in assigning letter grades to general hospitals throughout the United States, based on their ability to prevent medical errors and harm to patients. The grading system is peer-reviewed, fully transparent, and accessible to the public. Hospital Safety Grade results are based on more than 30 national performance measures and are updated each fall and spring.
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