VENICE — Venice Regional Bayfront Health saw its Hospital Safety Grade rise to a B when The Leapfrog Group released its semi-annual report Thursday.
Its grade hadn’t been that high in 18 months, since the spring 2018. It received a C in the reports issued last fall and this spring.
“We are pleased that our Leapfrog grade improved to a B, which underscores our commitment to continuous improvement,” Marketing Manager Julie Beatty said via email. “In many measures, we continue to perform at or better than national averages. For example, Venice Regional scored maximum points in the ‘Steps to Prevent Harm’ categories.”
A turnaround from below average to above average in several measures, including the occurrence of dangerous blood clots, collapsed lungs and serious breathing problems, contributed to the higher grade.
But the rating for preventing Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, a dangerous type of staph infection, dropped to below average from above average based on data from calendar year 2018, the time period analyzed.
That’s not the hospital’s more recent experience, though, Beatty said.
“We have not seen a case of MRSA in over a year,” she said.
Doctors ordering medication through a computer remained below average. The implementation of an electronic records system that would help address the shortcoming has been delayed until after season “to allow our physicians, caregivers and other staff members to remain focused on caring for our patients during the year’s busiest months,” Beatty said.
VRBH also showed improvement in several areas that have been chronic problems, though not quite enough to achieve an “average” rating.
Its score in the spring in the measure for having specially trained doctors to care for ICU patients was a 15. It’s a 50 in the new report, less than 6 points below the average, 55.61.
Scores in five patient satisfaction measures — communications with nurses, communications with doctors, responsiveness of hospital staff, communication about medicines and communication about discharge — also went up, though not as dramatically.
The hospital is no more than 6 points from moving up to “average” in each of them.
“We are pleased that the Leapfrog measures demonstrate our improvements in ICU physician staffing, nurse communication, communication with doctors, staff responsiveness, communication about medicines and discharge information,” Beatty said.
It was business as usual for Sarasota Memorial Hospital, which earned its seventh straight A.
“The rankings and ratings are very validating, but what matters most to us is how our patients feel and making sure they receive the best possible care,” Chief Medical Officer Dr. James Fiorica said in a news release.
Doctors Hospital picked up its 11th A in a row.
“Our entire team is dedicated to providing the best and safest care to every patient. It is part of our culture and what we do every day,” CEO Robert Meade said in a news release. “I thank all our nurses, physicians and care teams for their hard work and commitment.”
Englewood Community Hospital got its 15th consecutive A, dating back to 2012. Only 36 hospitals can claim that out of more than 2,600 surveyed.
“Our team at Englewood Community Hospital continues to put our patients first in every aspect of patient care,” CEO Michael Ehrat said in a news release.
Fawcett Memorial Hospital got a C after being a B-rated hospital in the two previous reports.
Bayfront Health Port Charlotte received a third straight C after five straight Ds.
Bayfront Health Punta Gorda achieved its second consecutive C after two Ds.
Like VRBH, the latter two facilities are owned by Tennessee-based Community Health Systems.
Of the more than 2,600 hospitals surveyed for this report, 33% earned an A, 25% got a B, 34% received a C, 8% were rated a D and just under 1% got an F.
See the full reports and compare hospitals at HospitalSafetyGrade.org.