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U.S. News Rates Baystate Among Highest-performing Hospitals

SPRINGFIELDU.S. News & World Report has rated Baystate Medical Center as part of an elite group of 34 “high-performing” hospitals in a new form of evaluation that rates hospitals on how well they perform in several surgical procedures and chronic conditions.

Baystate is only one of three hospitals in New England to be rated as “high-performing” in an analysis of 4,600 hospitals nationwide in the magazine’s new Best Hospitals for Common Care ratings released on May 20.

“This latest honor from U.S. News & World Report, in addition to already placing in its Best Hospitals report, is further recognition of the world-class care available to patients at Baystate Medical Center. It is truly an honor and a testament to our clinicians and staff who strive to deliver safe, high-quality care for our patients every day,” said Dr. Evan Benjamin, senior vice president for Quality and Population Health and chief quality officer for Baystate Health.

“The new Common Care report is unique in that it looks at numerical data based on hospital outcomes rather than basing judgment on a hospital solely on its reputation. It also emphasizes what we have known in the healthcare industry for a while, that hospitals that perform many of the same types of procedures tend to have better outcomes with them,” he added.

U.S. News evaluated hospitals based on their performance in three common operations — heart bypass, hip replacement, and knee replacement — and two widespread chronic conditions, congestive heart failure and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). To be eligible, hospitals had to perform a minimum number of each procedure each year. Hospitals were rated as “high-performing,” “average,” or “below average.” Approximately 10% of the hospitals rated in each condition or procedure were high-performing, but only 34 hit that mark in all five.

The new ratings reflect the magazine’s broadest expansion of its analysis of hospital quality since it established its annual Best Hospitals ranking of medical centers 25 years ago. While the magazine releases its Best Hospitals rankings annually to help patients with life-threatening or rare conditions to identify those that excel in treating the most difficult cases, the new Common Care rankings consider the kinds of diseases and conditions that most commonly lead to hospitalizations.

“The choice of a hospital can be life-changing, even for relatively routine surgery. Hospitals can differ greatly in quality, and excelling in one area doesn’t guarantee that a hospital excels in other areas,” said Ben Harder, chief of health analysis for U.S. News. “The good news for patients is that the majority of hospitals performed average or better.”

For more information on Baystate Medical Center, visit baystatehealth.org/bmc.

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