Chicago, IL

Four Hospitals in Illinois Placed on prestigious “Best Hospitals in America” List

Natalie Frank, Ph.D.

To be included, Hospitals had to receive an “A” rating on the Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade Assessment
University of Chicago Medical Center, one of 4 Illinois hospitals included on "Best Hospitals in America" listWikipedia/Public Domain

It has been recently announced that four Illinois hospitals rank among the top in the country. These were:

  • AMITA Health Resurrection Medical Center Chicago -- Chicago
  • Northwestern Medicine Kishwaukee Hospital -- DeKalb
  • Northwestern Medicine Palos Hospital -- Palos Heights
  • University of Chicago Medical Center -- Chicago

Hospitals for the list were selected by and the Leapfrog Group, a nonprofit healthcare organization. The decisions were based on 2021 data collected from 39 performance measures compiled into seven categories. The categories included:

  • Inpatient care management
  • Medication safety
  • Outpatient procedures and infections
  • Adult complex surgeries
  • Pediatric complex surgeries
  • Maternity care
  • Pediatric Care

In order to qualify, hospitals had to complete the Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade assessment for fall 2021and receive an A letter grade. In addition, eligible hospitals had to complete a qualitative assessment of excellence and receive a high score.

Facilities became ineligible if mortality rates for heart attacks, heart failure, pneumonia, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or coronary bypass surgery were higher than the national average. Hospitals also completed the 2022 spring Safety Grade assessment and were also disqualified if they received a C grade or worse.

Leapfrog considered other criteria as well. In particular, they assessed safe medication ordering practices to determine risk of medication errors, and the staffing on intensive care units. The response to what are termed “never events” were evaluated. These are medical errors that are so extreme that they should never happen, like amputating the wrong limb of giving a patient the wrong blood type.

Also considered in the rankings was medical performance in regards to high-risk operations such as lung cancer surgeries, heart surgeries, hip replacements and bariatric surgery.

Pediatric hospitals were examined based on benchmarks established for a variety of safety and management practices specific to pediatric facilities. In particular, procedures related to maintaining safe levels of radiation exposure during CT scans were reviewed and how children and their families perceived the overall experience of care was evaluated.

Pediatric hospitals were not assessed on certain measure that adult hospitals were required to meet criteria for. These included safety measures in place for ordering medication, high risk medical procedures or the qualitative assessment of excellence.

Over 2,200 hospitals participated in the 2021 Leapfrog Hospital Survey. From these, 148 hospitals made the grade to be included on the prestigious list. The Leapfrog Group works to aid consumers in making informed decisions about their medical care and to help them find and access the safest high-value care possible.

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