More than 40% of hospitals in California received a grade of C or lower in a new national report card on patient safety released Wednesday by the Leapfrog Group, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Report Card Details
The Leapfrog Group said it released its first-ever hospital patient safety scores to inform employers and consumers about hospitals that are performing poorly. The group estimates that 180,000 Americans die each year from hospital accidents, infections or errors.
For the report, the Leapfrog Group worked with patient safety experts to evaluate 2,652 hospitals based on 26 measures, such as infection rates and medication errors.
Forty-seven percent of hospitals nationwide received a grade of C or lower.
In California, 41% of the 264 hospitals studied received a grade of C or lower. The group handed out 97 A's, 58 B's, and 83 C's to California facilities.
Twenty-six hospitals in California ranked lower than a C. The Leapfrog Group will give those facilities until November to show improvement before issuing grades of D or F.
Leah Binder -- Leapfrog Group's president and CEO -- said consumers should use the new patient safety scores, rather than rely on hospitals' advertisements.
She said, "There are some hospitals with a reputation for having excellent quality of care and the latest technology, but they may not have done well on the hospital safety score."
The California Hospital Association praised the new report card for making patient safety information more accessible to patients.
David Perrott, CHA chief medical officer, said, "We believe in transparency, but this is not the end-all, be-all assessment for hospitals" (Terhune, Los Angeles Times, 6/6).