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Published on March 31, 2010

Overlake Hospital Medical Center Earns Distinguished Patient Safety Excellence Award Three Years in a Row

2010 Patient Safety Excellence Award

Bellevue, WA (March 31, 2010) – A recent study of patient safety at American hospitals found Overlake Hospital Medical Center to be among the top five percent in the nation, Overlake Hospital Medical Center announced today. The study, conducted by HealthGrades, the leading independent healthcare ratings organization, named Overlake as one of 238 hospitals nationwide to receive the 2010 HealthGrades Patient Safety Excellence Award.™

“Receiving this award the first year was like a gold star, but receiving it three years in a row is more like a gold medal,” said Craig Hendrickson, Overlake’s President and CEO. “I’m extremely proud of Overlake staff and physicians for clearly demonstrating that patient safety is part of every patient interaction and continually guides and informs the care we provide.”

In the study, 40 million hospitalization records from nearly 5,000 hospitals were analyzed to understand the incidence rates of 15 different patient safety events, from post-operative sepsis to complications from anesthesia, over the years 2006, 2007 and 2008. The study was objectively and independently conducted, using a methodology developed by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, a federal agency, and with data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

For hospitals that were identified as being in the top five percent in the nation, Medicare patients, on average, were 43 percent less likely to experience a patient safety event over the years 2006 to 2008.

HealthGrades conducts the largest annual studies of hospital quality in America, in part to identify hospitals that set quality benchmarks to which others can aspire. If all hospitals performed at the level of those receiving the Patient Safety Excellence Award, like Overlake, more than 200,000 patient safety events and nearly 23,000 Medicare deaths could have been avoided over the three years studied.

“Overlake Hospital Medical Center is among the hospitals that are setting the benchmarks for excellence in patient safety, something that the people of Bellevue and surrounding communities should take great pride and comfort in,” said Rick May, MD, a vice president at HealthGrades and co-author of the study. “To achieve this level of patient safety, hospitals have a culture of quality that drives vigilance and continuous improvement, and they should be congratulated.”

In the HealthGrades study, the following patient safety indicators were studied:

  • Complications of anesthesia
  • Death in low mortality Diagnostic Related Groupings (DRGs)
  • Decubitus ulcer (bed sores)
  • Death among surgical inpatients with serious treatable complications
  • Iatrogenic pneumothorax (collapsed lung)
  • Selected infections due to medical care
  • Post-operative hip fracture
  • Post-operative hemorrhage or hematoma
  • Post-operative physiologic and metabolic derangements
  • Post-operative respiratory failure
  • Post-operative pulmonary embolism or deep vein thrombosis
  • Post-operative sepsis
  • Post-operative abdominal wound dehiscence
  • Accidental puncture or laceration
  • Transfusion reaction

The full study can be found on HealthGrades’ Web site.

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