New York City Hospitals Rank Low, Very Low, For Patient Safety

blurry hospital corridorHow safe is your hospital?

The answer might actually surprise you.

A new report by nonprofit Leapfrog ranks 2,600 hospitals, giving letter grades based on safety. There are currently 5,564 registered hospitals in the United States, so Leapfrog assessed nearly half of the nation’s largest healthcare facilities. The Hospital Safety Grade report provides insight into the states with the best hospitals.

And at 47th, New York State ranks among the worst states for hospital safety.

USA Today reports that the grade factors in medical errors, hospital infections, and injuries. This information is based on patient surveys.

“It’s fine for a hospital to say they are excellent in their advertisements and brochures,” Leah Binder, Leapfrog’s president and CEO, said in a statement to USA Today. “But that’s not good enough for patients entrusting their lives to a hospital.”

While New York State did not rank well, New York City’s hospital received low grades as well. Brookdale Hospital Medical Center in Brooklyn, for example, received an F this year. This dropped from a D in 2012. According to USA Today this hospital had an increase in objects left inside of patients during surgical procedures. Many of the hospitals that received an F treat lower-income patients of color, such as those in New York City. Hospitals in Washington D.C., Los Angeles, and Baltimore received similar scores.

“It’s fundamentally discriminatory,” Helen Haskell, founder of Mothers Against Medical Error, said in a statement to USA Today. “It does nothing to improve care for the economically disadvantaged and may even put them at risk by holding their hospitals to lower standards.”

On the other end of the spectrum are Rhode Island, Maine, Hawaii, Idaho, and Virginia, taking the top five spots this year. According to USA Today hospitals in these states often have committees dedicated to patient safety.

For more information on the Hospital Safety Grade study, and to look up your local hospital, you can visit Leapfrog’s website.

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