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Saint Peter’s Ranked Among Best Hospitals in Nation “Top Performer” for Quality

November 1, 2012 Saint Peter's Healthcare System Community Calendar Featured Article.

Top Performer on Joint Commission Key Quality Measures 2011

Saint Peter’s University Hospital, the largest entity in the Saint Peter’s Healthcare System, is among 620 hospitals nationwide cited as a “top performer” by The Joint Commission, the nation’s leading healthcare accreditation organization. The report said the top hospitals – which collectively make up the top 18 percent of the 3,400 Joint Commission accredited hospitals – are leading the way nationally, providing a level of care that leads to positive patient outcomes.

The recognition, which coincides with the publication of The Joint Commission’s annual report, is announced in the fall of every year. The honor is based on data reported in 2011. To earn this designation, a hospital must score 95 percent or above on a single measure or metric of care reported to the commission. It also had to meet or exceed a 95 percent performance target for each individual metric – or category that is measured. The measures are an accounting of the processes followed when caring for patients with specific conditions designated by Joint Commission – heart failure, heart attack, pneumonia, and surgical care.

Examples of processes measured include:

Heart Attack

  • Aspirin given within 24 hours of arrival at hospital
  • Beta blocker medication prescribed at discharge
  • Smoking cessation advice or counseling provided for patients who smoke

Surgical Care

  • Antibiotic received by patient one hour before surgical incision/s made
  • Antibiotic given prophylactically discontinued within 24 hours of surgery ending
  • Urinary catheter removed on post-op day one or two

Saint Peter’s is one of only 14 healthcare providers in New Jersey – and the sole hospital in New Brunswick to be cited for excellence.

“The care and safety of our patients is a top priority and being recognized by The Joint Commission as a ‘top performer’ is one of the highest and most coveted honors in all of health care,” says Ronald C. Rak, president and CEO of Saint Peter’s Healthcare System. “It means that Saint Peter’s is among the best of the best in patient care. I couldn’t be more proud of the Saint Peter’s physicians, nurses and support staff.”

The Saint Peter’s ranking was listed in “Improving America’s Hospitals: The Joint Commission Annual Report on Quality and Safety 2012.” An independent, not-for-profit organization, the Joint Commission is the nation’s oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care. The Joint Commission is also a partner with the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid. Its self proclaimed mission is “to continuously improve health care for the public, in collaboration with other stakeholders, by evaluating healtcare organizations and inspiring them to excel in providing safe and effective care of the highest quality and value.”

“We understand that what matters most to our patients is safe, effective care,” said Anthony Passannante, Jr., M.D., vice president and chief medical officer for Saint Peter’s Healthcare System. “That’s why Saint Peter’s has made an aggressive commitment to quality and positive patient outcomes.”

News of the “top performer” ranking follows other recent awards. The Saint Peter’s University Hospital Stroke Program was recently awarded a Gold Plus Award from the American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association. The hospital has been nationally recognized for its cancer program since 1985. It is accredited with commendation as an Academic Comprehensive Care Program by the American College of Surgeons’ Commission on Cancer. The Breast Center at Saint Peter’s University Hospital was central New Jersey’s first facility specializing in breast care to be accredited by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers and was recently re-accredited for another three years. Another recent honor announced was the Women’s Choice Award from WomenCertified®, distinguishing Saint Peter’s as one of the 2012 America’s Best Hospitals for Patient Experience.