In the May 2013 issue of the nationally known magazine, Dempsey was rated with a score of 17 out of a possible 100. The average score was 49, and the hospital with the highest score – at 69 – was the Mayo Clinic Hospital in Phoenix, Arizona.
Dempsey Hospital officials, though, say that the ranking comes from information that is now outdated.
Weir\’s article, in full, continues below:
The safety score was based on readmission rates, patient communication, infections, overall complications, and overuse of computerized tomography (CT) scans.
The hospital received the lowest of a five-point scoring system for conveying drug information to patients as well as overuse of abdominal and chest scanning.
\”They were doing what appears to be double scanning, which leads to more exposure to radiation,\” said Joel Keehn, senior editor of health at Consumer Reports. \”There\’s rarely a good medical reason for it.\”
The hospital received low scores for most of the rest of the criteria. It\’s best score, a 3 out of 5, was for communicating to parents about hospital discharge.
St. Mary\’s Hospital in Waterbury ranked fifth-highest on the list of best teaching hospitals. It scored particularly high in preventing bloodstream infections, patient communications, and avoiding double scanning.
Keehn said most of the data used for the rankings was taken over a year-long period that ended in mid-2012. The information came from various sources, including Medicare and Medicaid, the state Department of Public Health and the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems, also known as H-CAHPS.
In a prepared statement, Dempsey Hospital officials said the rankings are based on outdated information and that they don\’t \”reflect the fact that the Health Center has substantially improved, across the board, in safety metrics.\”
\”As such,\’\’ the statement said, \”the report does not accurately portray the quality of care available at the UConn Health Center today.\”
The hospital officials also note that Hospital Compare, a survey of hospitals by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, ranks the hospital to be best in the state for a number of criteria, including assessing and providing pneumonia vaccine, ensuring that patients receive timely treatment to prevent blood clots after certain types of surgery, and making sure that all heart attack patients receive aspirin and a statin prescription at discharge.
Mary Cooper, chief quality officer of the Connecticut Hospital Association, said one hospital can get significantly different results in different safety evaluation analyses depending on the criteria used.
\”It speaks again to the fact that all of this is not yet a science,\” she said. Cooper also said that the \”random nature of some of these events\” can work for or against hospitals at any given time in evaluations. For instance, she said, bloodstream infections happen so infrequently that \”an organization may have a cluster of events that on a statistical basis may not have any impact.\”