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Augusta Health Receives 2012 HealthGrades Patient Safety Excellence Award

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Award recognizes a patient safety record in the top 5 percent of hospitals in the US; one of three Virginia Hospitals to earn the award three years in a row

Augusta Health has received the 2012 HealthGrades Patient Safety Excellence Award™, ranking in the top 5 percent of all hospitals in the United States in patient safety for the third year in a row.

In a study released by HealthGrades, a national source of healthcare provider information, Augusta Health was only of eight hospitals in Virginia to receive the award, and one of only three in Virginia to receive it consecutively for the past three years. The other two hospitals are Lynchburg General Hospital and Winchester Medical Center.

"All employees at Augusta Health focus on quality and patient safety, regardless of department, service line or location," said Fred Castello, MD, Chief Medical Officer at Augusta Health. "This award recognizes how successful our physicians and employees have been in translating that focus to the care they provide every day."

According to HealthGrades, patients at hospitals who received the Patient Safety Excellence Award experienced 48% fewer patient safety incidents, on average, compared to poorly performing hospitals. If all hospitals performed at this level, HealthGrades estimated that 254,000 patient safety incidents and 56,367 deaths among Medicare patients could have been avoided. The study analyzed 40 million records from approximately 5000 hospital nationwide, using Medicare inpatient data from the Medicare Provider Analysis and Review (MedPAR) database and Patient Safety Indicator software from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) to calculate event rates for 13 indicators of patient safety for all the nation's hospitals.

Augusta Health is an independent, nonprofit community hospital whose mission is to promote the health and well-being of our community through access to excellent care. Named one of the 100 Top Hospitals in America by Thomson Reuters in both 2011 and 2012, Augusta Health has also been nationally recognized by HealthGrades as one of America's 100 Best Hospitals for clinical excellence and patient safety. For more information about Augusta Health, its programs or its services, please contact Public Relations at 540.245.7329 or 540.221.7329, or visit our website,