JPS Health Network is one of only a few purely public safety net hospitals across the country – and the only one of its kind in Texas – to receive a B grade in the newly-released Leapfrog Group Spring 2021 Hospital survey.
“Leapfrog Group has very tough standards,” said JPS Chief Quality Officer Dr. Robert Stephenson. “They’re particularly tough for a hospital that handles more vulnerable patients. There are really no hospitals across the country just like JPS that got as high as a B. We’re certainly the only purely county hospital in Texas that got a B.”
Stephenson explained that the Leapfrog grades are based on several different factors including a survey that is done of hospitals across the country, examining data that hospitals are required to submit to the federal government, and Medicare results that show the outcome of patients whose care is paid for by that organization.
It’s tougher for a safety net hospital to get high marks because often its patients don’t have access to regular, preventative healthcare, Stephenson said. As a result, they come to the hospital when their cases have developed into an emergency, therefore they’re much more difficult cases to fix.
While earning an A may be a tall order, Stephenson said JPS leaders and team members will never give up their efforts to reach the top of the scale.
“We’re very proud to have earned a B,” Stephenson said. “But we’re not satisfied. We want to be the best we can be.”
Areas where JPS scored particularly well include the category Practices to Prevent Errors. The health network received a perfect score in the subcategories Staff Works Together to Prevent Errors, Safe Medication Administration, and Doctors Ordering Medication Through a Computer.
“What this means to the patients is that we are a hospital system that takes on all practices possible to benefit the safety of our patients,” Stephenson said, “It should give them confidence to know we’ve been recognized for our dedication to providing the best care possible.”
Founded in 2000, the Leapfrog Group is a non-profit organization that collects and reports hospital safety data. The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade assigns a letter grade similar to a school report card based on the institution’s patient safety record including its efforts to eliminate errors, injuries, accidents, and infections with a goal of improving the quality of healthcare available across the United States. About 2,500 hospitals are ranked twice each year nationwide.