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April 29, 2015

Report: New Jersey ranks fifth in hospital safety

Health News Safety
04292015_Hospital_AP Mike Derer/AP

Doctors operate on the arm of a patient at Monmouth Medical Center in Long Branch, N.J.

New Jersey ranks fifth in the nation for hospital safety, according to a report released Wednesday by The Leapfrog Group.

The biannual hospital safety report card is based on data measuring how often patients contract infections, develop bedsores, receive the wrong medication or fall victim to a staff mistake. 

Of the state's 66 total hospitals evaluated in the report, 29 received As, 26 earned Bs and 10 got Cs. One hospital, Saint Michael's Medical Center in Newark, earned a D.

"Hospitals must consistently demonstrate their capability to prevent harm in order to earn the trust of their patients," Linda Schwimmer, vice president of the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute and a Leapfrog board member, told 

"That's why the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute wants to recognize all our 'A' hospitals and encourage them to strive for continued vigilance and excellence, keeping the well-being of their patients and prevention of harm as the number-one priority."

The rankings are controversial among some hospital executives in the state and across the country, who have said the information is outdated, and that hospital services cannot be boiled down to a simple letter grade.

Ahead of New Jersey are Maine, Massachusetts, Virginia and Florida, according to Leapfrog.

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