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December 06, 2011

Rush University Medical Center Named a Top Hospital for Quality, Safety and Efficiency by the Leapfrog Group

Rush’s Commitment to Quality Care Is Honored for the Third Consecutive Year

(CHICAGO) — For the third time, Rush University Medical Center has been named one of the top hospitals in the country by the Leapfrog Group, a national not-for-profit organization that promotes health care safety and quality improvement.

Rush is one of only 65 hospitals nationwide and five hospitals in Illinois being honored today as a “Top Hospital” at Leapfrog’s annual meeting in Washington, D.C.

“It’s important to be aware of performance differences and the emphasis a hospital places on quality because it can make a difference in a patient’s care,” said Dr. Larry Goodman, Rush CEO. “The Leapfrog survey is one way to help patients assess and compare hospitals’ performance on the national standards of safety, quality, and efficiency in order to assist them in making the best decision on where they receive their care.”

The Leapfrog Hospital Recognition Program measures and evaluates hospital performance to recognize achievements and encourage improvements in the efficiency of hospital care. The program’s latest rankings drew on information gathered through the 2011 Leapfrog Hospital Survey, which compiled data reported by nearly 1,200 hospitals in 45 states.

“It gives me great satisfaction to see the broad commitment Illinois hospitals have given to patient safety,” said Larry Boress, Leapfrog’s Regional Roll-Out leader from Illinois, and president and CEO of Midwest Business Group on Health.

To be designated a Leapfrog Top Hospital this year, hospitals in urban settings such as Rush needed to fulfill the following criteria:

  • Fully meet Leapfrog standards for using computerized physician order entry (CPOE) systems, which have been shown to reduce adverse drug events by up to 88 percent. To be named a Top Hospital, physicians at the institution must enter at least 75 percent of medication orders through a CPOE system, and the hospital must demonstrate in a test that the system can alert physicians to at least half of common, serious prescribing errors.

  • Fully meet stringent performance standards for at least half of the complex, high-risk procedures performed at the hospital, such as heart bypass surgery. Research shows that a patient’s risk of death is reduced between two and four times, depending on the procedure, if the care is received in a hospital that meets Leapfrog’s standards.

  • Meet standards for staffing the intensive care unit with board-certified doctors specifically trained in critical care medicine, which have been shown to reduce mortality by 40 percent.

  • Achieve a score of at least 69 out of 100 for efficiency (the intersection of quality and cost). The Leapfrog Hospital Recognition Program measured efficiency in terms of quality outcomes and resource use (measured by length of stay and readmission rates), with quality weighted more heavily.

In addition, hospitals are measured on their progress in preventing infections and other hospital-acquired conditions and adopting policies regarding the handling of serious medical errors.

“I’m grateful to everyone who works at Rush for their effort to make this achievement possible,” observes Goodman.

The results are posted on a website open to the patients and families, the public and employers and other purchasers of health care. It is the most complete picture available of a hospital’s quality and safety. The website is


Rush is a not-for-profit academic medical center comprising Rush University Medical Center, Rush University, Rush Oak Park Hospital and Rush Health.

Rush is dedicating a 14-floor, 806,000-square-foot hospital building near the corner of Ashland Avenue and the Eisenhower Expressway in December. The new hospital, scheduled to open in January 2012, is the centerpiece of a ten-year campus redevelopment plan called the Rush Transformation, which also includes completion of a new orthopedics building, a new parking garage and central power plant, renovations of selected existing buildings and demolition of obsolete buildings. The new hospital is designed and built to conserve energy and water, reduce waste and use sustainable building materials. Rush is seeking Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.  It will be the first full-service, “green” hospital in Chicago.

Rush’s mission is to provide the best possible care for its patients.  Educating tomorrow’s health care professional, researching new and more advanced treatment options, transforming its facilities and investing in new technologies—all are undertaken with the drive to improve patient care now, and for the future.

About the Midwest Business Group on Health (
The Chicago-based, Midwest Business Group on Health (MBGH) is one of the nation's leading business groups of private and public employers. MBGH's 100 members employ over 3 million lives, spending more than $3.5 billion on health care benefits on an annual basis. MBGH is a catalyst for improvements in health benefits management strategies and community health management.

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