MSHA outperforms other hospitals

Published 8:09 am Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Hospitals in the Mountain States Health Alliance network are outperforming not only Tennessee and Virginia hospitals, but also hospitals nationwide when it comes to key patient safety benchmarks, according to data released recently by the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
With the multitude of private organizations that measure hospitals, the CMS scoring comes from the only organization that compensates hospitals for its services, and these scores have led 721 hospitals across the nation to receive lower Medicare reimbursement.
As part of a move to reduce medical errors throughout the hospital industry, CMS released scoring for each hospital in the nation demonstrating which hospitals were most effective in preventing certain types of hospital acquired conditions, including infections. It is reported that up to one quarter of all hospitals in the nation will receive penalties from CMS based on their performance. All of Mountain States Health Alliance’s facilities scored well outside the penalty range, with many of its hospitals leading both Tennessee and Virginia with some of the best scores for preventing hospital-acquired conditions in each state.
While 15 percent of Tennessee hospitals were penalized, and 19 percent of Virginia hospitals were penalized, zero of Mountain States’ hospitals were penalized. Teaching hospitals were most likely to be penalized, with as many as half of the nation’s teaching hospitals receiving penalties this year. The major teaching hospital in the Tri-Cities region, however, outperformed its peers. Johnson City Medical Center – the region’s major teaching hospital affiliated with East Tennessee State University and also an affiliated clinical partner with Vanderbilt University, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Cincinnati Children’s Hospital – not only avoided penalties, but scored alongside Vanderbilt Medical Center with a better relative score than not only other teaching hospitals, but most other hospitals nationwide.
For the CMS survey, each hospital was given a composite score of 1 to 10, with 1 being the best score. The survey looked at rates of conditions such as central-line associated bloodstream infections, catheter-associated urinary tract infections, blood clots, bed sores and falls. Hospitals that scored higher than 7 will have their Medicare payments reduced by 1 percent through September 2015.
The average score in Tennessee was 5.17, with 15 percent of hospitals receiving penalties. The average score in Virginia was 5.20, with 19.5 percent of hospitals receiving penalties.
The average score nationwide was 5.41, with a quarter of all hospitals receiving penalties. Mountain States Health Alliance hospitals outperformed Tennessee, Virginia and the nation with an average score of 3.20, with Sycamore Shoals Hospital and Smyth County Community Hospital scoring as low as 1.35.
“Our first priority is patient safety, and the credit goes to our doctors, nurses and professional team members who work hard every day to pursue perfection,” said Alan Levine, president and CEO of Mountain States. “We pledge to continue working hard to achieve good outcomes for our patients. That’s all we care about.”
A full report of all hospitals and their scores is available at:

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox