Archive for Thursday, November 18, 2004

LMH treatment ranks high

Hospital in top 10 percent in area

November 18, 2004

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Lawrence Memorial Hospital ranks among the top hospitals in the Kansas City area for the treatment of heart attack, heart failure and pneumonia, according to a recently released report.

A quarterly report on hospital performance in the Kansas City area found that LMH continued to improve in all three areas that are measured, Gene Meyer, president and chief executive officer of LMH, told hospital board members at their Wednesday meeting.

"The trend is moving in the right direction for all the categories," Meyer said. "It really is a great report card for us."

The report, titled "The Quality Initiative: A Public Resource on Hospital Performance," measures how often hospitals followed the recommended guidelines for providing care in each of the three areas. The data were collected from Oct. 1, 2003, through March 31.

At LMH, the report found:

  • The hospital followed the guidelines 100 percent of the time when dealing with heart attack patients. That's up from a 98 percent rating in March, when the last report was released. The average score for the 19 hospitals in the area was 93 percent. LMH was one of three hospitals in the area that scored 100 percent.
  • The hospital followed the guidelines 96 percent of the time when dealing with heart failure patients. That's above the average score of 85 percent and up from LMH's last score of 89 percent. The 96 percent score also put LMH in the top 10 percent of the hospitals surveyed.
  • For pneumonia care, guidelines were followed 90 percent of the time. That's better than the 79 percent average and put LMH in the top 10 percent of hospitals surveyed. The score is better than the 85 percent rating the hospital received in March.

"We're the only hospital that has at least a 90 percent rating in all three of the areas, and that's a real accomplishment," said Bob Schulte, an LMH board member.

The University of Kansas Hospital in Kansas City, Kan., was included in the survey. It scored above average in each category, but failed to break into the top 10 percent of any of the areas measured. The hospital received a 98 percent rating for heart attack care, 91 percent for heart failure care and 84 percent for pneumonia care.

Dennis McCulloch, a spokesman with the University of Kansas Hospital, said hospital officials were generally pleased with the results but did think the way hospitals were measured could be refined.

"We think sometimes there are things that count against us even when it is good medicine," McCulloch said.

Hospitals voluntarily agree to be part of the survey, which is conducted by a group that includes representatives from the American Hospital Assn. and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Meyer said such surveys eventually would become mandatory as Medicare, Medicaid and insurance companies started implementing a "pay-for-performance" system that will base how much hospitals receive for procedures based on how well they score on certain surveys.

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