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Quality & Safety: How Southcoast Health Measures Up

Safety and the highest quality outcomes for all our patients are the guiding principles of Southcoast Health. We take pride in the excellent outcomes we achieve for our patients, and are committed to hospital quality and safety in southeastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island at our three hospitals and many physicians practices.

Our ongoing performance improvement initiatives help us deliver better health care to you and your family, making them a priority to us at Southcoast Health. Let us know what we can do for you to feel secure and confident in our health care services. Contact us with your questions or feedback today.

How to Compare Measures

We understand that you have a choice when it comes to selecting a doctor and hospital. As you compare your options, hospital quality measures are among many factors you should examine.

As more health care quality information is made available by hospitals, governmental agencies and other organizations, it is important to make sure you are comparing similar measures. In some cases, measures may sound the same, but it could be like comparing apples and oranges.

Here are a few tips to make sure the quality measures you are comparing are actually the same:

  • Do the measures use the same scale (such as infections per 1,000 patients)?
  • Do the measures use numbers or percentages?
  • Do the measures combine scores (such as “excellent,” “very good” and “good”) or just report a single score (such as “excellent”)?

When comparing institutions, always make sure the measures are reported the same way.

Where You Can Find Data

There are a number of websites that provide data on doctor and hospital quality. We’ve listed a few below for your convenience.

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is the federal agency that administers the Medicare and Medicaid programs. CMS provides information on how well hospitals nationwide care for all their adult patients with certain medical conditions. CMS is part of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. You can also learn about home health care comparisons and physician comparisons.

Type: Government
Cost: Free

Healthgrades

Healthgrades provides ratings of hospitals nationwide on a number of quality indicators, using a “star” rating system to rank hospitals.

Type: Private
Cost: Some free, fees for some reports

The Joint Commission

This Joint Commission is a nonprofit organization that is responsible for accrediting hospitals. They offer information on how hospitals comply with the National Patient Safety Goals.

Type: Quasi­government
Cost: Free

The Leapfrog Group

Leapfrog was started by a group of employers who hope to achieve higher safety, quality and affordability in health care through voluntary reporting of health care quality indicators.

Type: Private
Cost: Free

Massachusetts Board of Registration in Medicine

Massachusetts Board of Registration is the state agency that licenses physicians to practice medicine in Massachusetts. You can view profiles of all licensed physicians, including information about a physician’s education and training, board certifications, honors, malpractice information and any disciplinary action taken.

Massachusetts Executive Office of Health & Human Services

The Massachusetts Executive Office of Health & Human Services provides information about the health care safety and quality in Massachusetts. This site includes information on outcomes for different procedures and conditions.

Type: Government
Cost: Free

Massachusetts Health Quality Partners

MHQP provides reliable information to help physicians improve the quality of care they provide their patients and help consumers take an active role in making informed decisions about their health care.

Type: Private
Cost: Free

PatientCareLink

PatientCareLink is a health care quality and transparency collaborative comprised of Massachusetts hospitals and their nursing leaders. It is represented by the Massachusetts Hospital Association and the Massachusetts Organization of Nurse Executives.

Type: Professional organization
Cost: Free

Quality and patient safety is extremely important to Southcoast Hospitals. Let us know whether this information is helpful or how we could better serve you. Use our Contact Form to contact us if you have any questions or comments.

Southcoast Health offers information on hospital quality and safety in Fall River, New Bedford and Wareham, MA.