HOLMDEL, NJ - Local Hospitals in the Hackensack Meridian Health system have some great news to share - they just got an 'A' from one of the leading scorecards on hospital safety, The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade.

The Leapfrog Group assessed more than 2,600 hospitals across the country. Their ratings for Riverview and Bayshore are the highest rating possible.

According to the press release, the independent, nonprofit grading system assigns “A,” “B,” “C,” “D” and “F” letter grades to general acute-care hospitals in the United States. Administered on behalf of employers and other purchasers, the Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade is the nation’s only rating system focused entirely on errors, accidents, injuries and infections. The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade is reviewed by a National Expert Panel and receives guidance from the Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality at Johns Hopkins Medicine. The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade is peer-reviewed, fully transparent and free to the public. It is updated every six months, once in the fall and once in the spring.

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For the fall 2018 Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grades, 33 percent of hospitals in traditionally blue states and 32 percent of hospitals in traditionally red states received “A’s.”

  • The five states with the highest percentage of “A” hospitals this fall are New Jersey (blue), Oregon (blue), Virginia (blue), Massachusetts (blue), and Texas (red).
  • Red states with the highest percentage of “A” hospitals are Texas (43 percent), North Carolina (43 percent) and Ohio (42 percent).
  • The five states with the lowest percentage of “A” hospitals are Connecticut (blue), Nebraska (red), Washington, D.C. (blue), Delaware (blue) and North Dakota (red).

The analysis of red and blue states was sourced from the nonpartisan interactive electoral map, 270toWin, and was based on data from the 2016 presidential election.

“Health care was an important issue in the 2018 mid-term elections, yet both parties are still neglecting the third leading cause of death in America—errors and infections in hospitals,” said Leah Binder, president and CEO of The Leapfrog Group. “Every elected official, from city councilors, to senators, to the President, should hold hospitals accountable and support efforts to improve patient safety.”

Across all states, additional Hospital Safety Grade findings include:

  • Of more than 2,600 hospitals graded, 32 percent earned an “A,” 24 percent earned a “B,” 37 percent a “C,” 6 percent a “D” and just under 1 percent an “F”
  • Hospitals with “F” grades are located in California (blue), Florida (red), Illinois (blue), Indiana (red), Louisiana (red), Mississippi (red), New York (blue), New Jersey (blue), New Mexico (blue) and South Carolina (red)
  • There are no “A” hospitals in Washington, D.C., Delaware or North Dakota
  • Impressively, 42 hospitals nationwide have achieved an “A” in every grading update since the launch of the Safety Grade in spring 2012

To further address patient safety concerns, The Leapfrog Group expanded its rating this year to include an assessment of hospital use of Bar Code Medication Administration (BCMA), which helps reduce the risk of giving the wrong medication to a patient at the bedside. With medication errors accounting for the most common errors made in hospitals, and harm from these mistakes affecting as many as one in four patients, measures like BCMA indicate whether hospitals are establishing systems known to help their staff avoid such problems.

For Hackensack Meridian Health, earning a grade of A is one way they can validate their work for patients, families and medical professionals.

For more information about the Safety Grades, as well as individual hospital grades and state rankings, please visit www.hospitalsafetygrade.org