Wellstar Douglas Hospital was one of 24 Georgia hospitals that scored an “A” for safety in ratings released Thursday by a nonprofit health-care watchdog group. (Jim Massara / Patch)
DOUGLASVILLE, GA — Even during a pandemic, Wellstar Douglas Hospital was ranked among the safest hospitals in Georgia last week by a nationwide nonprofit health-care watchdog group.
The Douglasville hospital received an “A” grade in the spring 2021 Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade, a national distinction recognizing how well it protected patients from errors, injuries, accidents, and infections. Leapfrog’s latest report was released on Thursday.
Leapfrog grades hospitals twice a year, assigning letter grades from “A” to “F” based on each hospital’s ability to protect patients from preventable errors, accidents, injuries and infections.
More than 2,700 general, acute-care U.S. hospitals were assessed for Leapfrog’s Spring Safety Grades.
Other hospitals near Douglasville that were graded include:
Wellstar Paulding Hospital, Hiram — A
Wellstar Cobb Hospital, Austell — B
Wellstar Kennestone Hospital, Marietta — B
Atlanta Medical Center South Campus, East Point — D
24 hospitals received an A grade.
19 hospitals received a B grade.
30 hospitals received a C grade.
3 hospitals received a D grade.
It’s worth noting the hospitals were graded during a time of extraordinary pressure on the health care system due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“This pandemic emphasized how much we rely on America’s health care workforce,” said Leah Binder, president and CEO of The Leapfrog Group. “Our straight ‘A’ hospitals remind us how preparedness protected their patients as well as their workforce and created a high level of organizational resilience.”
Across all states, highlights of findings from the spring 2021 Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade include:
Thirty-three percent of hospitals received an “A,” 24 percent received a “B,” 35 percent received a “C,” 7 percent received a “D,” and less than 1 percent received an “F.”
Five states with the highest percentages of “A” hospitals are Massachusetts, Idaho, Maine, Virginia, and North Carolina.
There were no “A” hospitals in South Dakota or North Dakota.
To determine each state’s grade, Leapfrog used up to 28 national performance measures from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the Leapfrog Hospital Survey and information from other supplemental data sources. When averaged, performance measures produce a single letter grade representing a hospital’s overall performance in keeping patients safe from preventable harm and medical errors.
The goal of the Hospital Safety Grade is to reduce deaths caused by hospital errors and injuries.
Leapfrog estimates that if the risk at all hospitals was equivalent to what it is at “A” hospitals, 50,000 lives at other facilities would have been saved. Overall, the researchers estimate that 160,000 lives are lost every year due to avoidable medical errors. That figure is down from 2016, when the Leapfrog Group estimated there were 205,000 avoidable deaths.
The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade is peer-reviewed by a panel of national experts, and the Leapfrog Group receives guidance from the Johns Hopkins Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality.