State News

Nearly 40% of Georgia hospitals earned average marks for safety from independent watchdog

(The Center Square) — Roughly four in 10 Georgia hospitals earned a grade of C, according to a new analysis from an independent national watchdog.

Of the 83 hospitals The Leapfrog Group graded, it gave 21 hospitals (25.3%) an A, 23 hospitals (27.7%) a B, and four hospitals (4.8%) a D. The remaining 33 hospitals (39.8%) received a C as part of the fall 2022 Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grades.

The nonprofit group did not grade two hospitals — both in Savannah. Wellstar Cobb Medical Center and Wellstar Douglas Medical Center were among the hospitals in metro Atlanta to receive an A in the analysis.

Georgia hospitals were roughly in line with national numbers.

The survey found that 36% of hospitals received a C, 30% received an A, 28% received a B, and 6% received a D. Just 1% received an F, the group said.

“Full commitment of hospital leadership to safety remains essential,” Leah Binder, president and CEO of The Leapfrog Group, said in an announcement. “With transparency, hospitals have made tremendous progress over the last decade across patient safety measures and have the potential to make similar strides over the next 10 years.”

The Leapfrog Group has assigned grades to hospitals for 10 years. It uses more than 30 national performance measures to develop its grades, which are updated each fall and spring.

With the exercise, the group aims to “hold hospitals accountable to uphold high standards of patient care and safety to protect and save lives,” Natasha Taylor, the senior director of Georgia Watch, a statewide consumer advocacy organization, said in an announcement.

Georgians with concerns about care at a hospital may have little help from the state. A Center Square analysis earlier this year found that the Georgia Composite Medical Board, which purports that it “protects the health of Georgians,” routinely dismisses an overwhelming majority of the complaints it receives.

By T.A. DeFeo | The Center Square contributor

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