Austin, TX—St. David’s HealthCare announced today that all of its Austin hospitals received a Healthgrades 2021 Patient Safety Excellence Award™. This distinction – which recognizes hospitals for excellent performance in safeguarding patients from serious, potentially preventable complications and adverse events – places St. David’s Medical Center (including Heart Hospital of Austin and St. David’s Georgetown Hospital), St. David’s South Austin Medical Center and St. David’s North Austin Medical Center among the top 10% of all short-term acute care hospitals in the nation reporting patient safety data to Healthgrades.

St. David’s Medical Center was also recognized with a Healthgrades 2021 Outstanding Patient Experience Award™ for the eighth consecutive year. This award, which uses Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) patient survey data, recognizes the top 15% of eligible hospitals in the nation with the highest overall patient experience scores.

“These awards underscore our commitment to providing safe, high-quality care to every patient every day,” David Huffstutler, president and chief executive officer of St. David’s HealthCare, said. “We applaud the extraordinary efforts of our doctors, nurses and staff who helped us earn this recognition, especially during this critical time of need.”

Healthgrades evaluated more than 4,500 hospitals and recognized 84 elite hospitals that achieved both patient safety and patient experience distinctions. This places St. David’s Medical Center in the top 2% of eligible hospitals in the nation to receive both awards.

Healthgrades 2021 Patient Safety Excellence Award™

During the study period (2017 through 2019), Healthgrades 2021 Patient Safety Excellence Award recipient hospitals demonstrated excellent performance in safeguarding Medicare patients, as measured by objective outcomes—risk-adjusted patient safety indicator (PSI) rates—for 13 PSIs defined by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). A 14th PSI included in the evaluation is that the hospital system has not left foreign objects in the body during a surgery or procedure.

If all hospitals in the country performed at the level of award recipients for each of the PSIs evaluated by AHRQ, 106,052 patient safety events could have been avoided. In addition, Healthgrades found that patients treated in hospitals receiving the Patient Safety Excellence Award achieved better outcomes than those treated in non-recipient hospitals. On average, patients are*:

  • 50.3% less likely to experience a collapsed lung due to a procedure or surgery in or around the chest
  • 60.3% less likely to experience a hip fracture following surgery
  • 66.5% less likely to experience pressure sores or bed sores acquired in the hospital
  • 65.4% less likely to experience catheter-related bloodstream infections acquired at the hospital

Healthgrades 2021 Outstanding Patient Experience Award™

In addition to being recognized as a Healthgrades 2021 Patient Safety Excellence Award recipient, St. David’s Medical Center also out-performed peer hospitals in providing outstanding patient experience.

Healthgrades evaluated performance by applying a scoring methodology for 10 patient experience measures using data collected from a 29-question experience survey from the hospital’s own patients. The survey questions focus on patients’ perspectives of the care they receive in a hospital, ranging from cleanliness and noise levels in patient rooms to factors such as provider communication and responsiveness to patients’ needs. The measures also include whether a patient would recommend the hospital to friends or family, as well as their overall rating of the hospital.

You can learn more about the hospital quality methodologies for the Healthgrades Awards online.