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Phoebe responds to Leapfrog score

Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital

Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital

ALBANY, Ga. -- A poor rating of Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital by The Leapfrog Group stems from its report being based on old data, as well as some factors in its analysis that were excluded, officials with the hospital say.

The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Score report, released in June and published in "Health" magazine this week, ranks Phoebe No. 6 among the 25 worst hospitals in the United States, giving it a letter grade of "F."

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Hospital Compare site, the 2012 Leapfrog Hospital Survey and American Hospital Association data from 2009 and 2010 were used to determine the hospital's score. Some of the data from CMS date back to July 2009.

Dr. Doug Patten, senior vice president of medical affairs at Phoebe, noted that the hospital received high marks from Georgia Trend, which gave Phoebe a No. 8 ranking among the top large hospitals in the state and Phoebe North a No. 7 ranking among the top small hospitals.

That report, in the magazine's December 2012 issue, also pulled its information from the CMS site.

"There are two entities looking at the same data and (perceiving it) differently," Patten said. "I find that very troubling, because it is hard enough to make health care choices; it is very complex. If you take this information (and boil it down) to a single letter grade, that does not give all the information a person needs.

"We will continue to work with Leapfrog. We don't see them as enemies. We see them as having the same agenda as us (promoting quality of care), so we will work with them."

In the meantime, Patten said that the staff at Phoebe is working to close the gaps on the hospital's core measures in its pursuit of becoming a Top 10 percent hospital.

The data provided in the report on Phoebe showed that, for air embolisms, the hospital received a value of ".074," with the worst-performing hospital receiving a ".1." For deaths from serious treatable complications after surgery, Phoebe scored 163.82, while the worst-performing hospital received a score of 163.8.

For computerized prescriber order entry and intensive care unit physician staffing, the hospital received scores of 20 and 5, respectively, with the best performing hospital receiving a 100 in both categories. The report shows that the computer order entry data were from a 2009 AHA technology supplement, while the ICU staffing score was based on a 2010 AHA survey.

"In 2009, we were nowhere near where we are now in terms of computer order entry," Patten said. "(For that), we are where we need to be. We are hitting all the right targets."

Data for several other categories, including breathing failure after surgery, leadership structures and systems, culture measurement, feedback and intervention, and hand hygiene, were unavailable because the majority of that information was obtained from the 2012 Leapfrog Hospital Survey, which Phoebe did not participate in, further contributing to the use of old data for the survey, Patten said.

On the flip side, Phoebe received scores ranging from 85-97 out of 100 for patients receiving an antibiotic within an hour prior to surgical incision, patients receiving the right antibiotic and surgery patients receiving appropriate treatment to prevent blood clots at the right time -- as well as a few other areas.

Phoebe was the only hospital in Georgia to make the 25 worst hospitals listing. Among the others were University of California Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, which was ranked No. 4. Wiregrass Medical Center in Geneva, Ala., received the No. 1 spot.

"It was surprising for a lot of those hospitals on there, because the quality of care they deliver does not match up to that score," Patten said.

A search of other nearby hospitals shows that Colquitt Regional Medical Center in Moultrie earned a "C" grade, while Palmyra Medical Center -- currently Phoebe North -- earned a "B." Tift Regional Medical Center in Tifton earned a "C," while John D. Archbold Medical Center earned a "B."

Comments

dingleberry 1 year, 7 months ago

Poor Phoebe. Always maligned, so they say. All others are out of step compared to Phoebe. We know, we know too well.

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tocar 1 year, 7 months ago

What is being done inside of Phoebe to address sanitation conditions? So many refer to Phoebe as the steph capital of the south.

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chinaberry25 1 year, 7 months ago

Of course they will respond that way. I have heard from many people if you do not have an infection when you go in, you will have one when you come out, especially if you have surgery. When you are trying to become a monopoly in court, you do not want this to come out!

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FlunkyMonkey 1 year, 7 months ago

Go to Phoebe Worth and count the cockroaches....isn't it funny that Palmyra received a higher grade than Phoebe? Pity we can't have Palmyra back....

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RedEric 1 year, 7 months ago

Maybe Phoebe should make employees start the day with a shower after which they put on hospital supplied uniforms. It seems a losing battle if you have a clean hospital and filthy bodies.

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VietVet1 1 year, 7 months ago

Is anyone really surprised? Yes, we need Palmyra back.

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

The quality of Phoebe's Medical Care depends in large part on the quality of the Nursing or Medical Supervisor over a particular area or unit. The ER service, including staff and professionals are superior. The triage is everybit as good as Emory or MD Anderson. Dr. James Black among others are thorough, empathic and exceptionally competent. The floor and Unit staff quality vary tremendously which has a lot to do with how they were trained and how they are supervised. After dealing with a nurse five minutes you can just about tell where they were trained and if they are supervised effectively. As Darton trains more nurses and their BSN program takes root, I think it will improve locally. Albany State nurses are just plain marginal for the most part. Perhaps Phoebe doesn't pay enough to keep the better ones here. Of the several units my wife and I have been on during the past year Dr. James Black and Oncology Unit get superlative marks from us. I just can't write enough good things about Dr. Black. I would put him against the reputations of Marcus Welby or Ben Casey without hesitation.

The one area I saw consistently poor throughout the hospital was house keeping. The staff do not know how to clean a bathroom, dust or mop. The equipment and cleaning products they have are inadequate. The procedures and schedules are ineffective. They swipe not dust or wipe. They come into a room too infrequently to make any difference even if their procedures were proper. I am not surprised about the infection rate. My wife and I always take cleaning products and gloves and sanitize the rooms. Emory and MD Anderson are the other two hospitals we have extended experience with and these hospitals have excellent sanitation routines and results.

I don't want my comments to reflect badly on Phoebe as my wife and I support them 100%. These criticisms are constructive and I have written the same to the Hospital Administration because they always send a form to complete asking for response. Nurse training isn't really something they can do a lot about but if I were Doug Patten I would be visiting the Nursing Department Heads at ASU, ATC and DSC.

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dougpatten 1 year, 7 months ago

We exist to delvier the best possible care, and to exceed the expectations of the communities we serve. We will continue to get better as we receive and respond to the observations of the people we serve.

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dingleberry 1 year, 7 months ago

Well, when my wife went in for an out patient procedure, there was blood on the gurney rails into and out of the OR. Showed it to a nurse who wiped rails down and still didn't get it, another redo required. Could this be where infections come from? The only expectation no exceeded was the Godzilla bill, so please start charging a little less, my observation to aspire to. Git 'er done, Doug! .

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billybob 1 year, 7 months ago

It is funny how the article quoted you on the difficulty of making healthcare choices as your organization has done all they can to eliminate choices available to the citizens of this community by gobbling up as many healthcare facilities as you can.

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Ihope4albany 1 year, 7 months ago

It amazing how the failure of Phoebe gets blamed on ASU. When students get their Masters in nursing from ASU and go over to start Darton's BA nursing program its okay, right.

Another case of corporate greed sacrificing quality is what caused the rating. The rating was valid for 2009 data. In three years when the 2012 data will be used in comparison to other hospitals, let's see what the excuse will be then!

This grade is just why the FTC is fighting the merger. If we think its bad now, it will only get worse.

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buddy 1 year, 7 months ago

You Palmyra lovers are fools! Palmyra was filthy every time I "had" to go there. It was like stepping back 20 years when you walked in the door. I don't agree with a lot of Phoebe's finances, but I have had no problems with their medical care.

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FlunkyMonkey 1 year, 7 months ago

Go to Phoebe Worth. The last time I was there cockroaches were running across the floor--residents of Worth County call it the Roach Motel. Wish we had Baptist Hospital back.

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honestlysaying 1 year, 7 months ago

Funny, I submit a lengthy (admittedly) post with straightforward and honest comments. It doesn't get airtime but immediate responses from from the admin are put up right behind it. Are we submitting to PPMH first for their approval first? Speak to people in Albany and the surrounding areas. Physicians, nurses, attorneys and others will relate stories that are worrisome on multiple levels, and would offend the sensibilities of many (you will have to do it on the QT though because folks know what happens when they speak out). This is what happens when profit, production, and power are put at the forefront of all concerns and patient care and quality (beyond "getting the paperwork right" so it all looks good) become secondary. Excuses seem to be the norm, explain it away and it will fade into the background. I feel sorry for the communities that are subjected to this with no other choice with which to turn.

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Cartman 1 year, 7 months ago

"...it is very complex. If you take this information (and boil it down) to a single letter grade, that does not give all the information a person needs."

Dude. The grade was an "F".

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Jack_Frost 1 year, 7 months ago

And really, doesn't this say it all?

I wonder what Tom and Jeff would have said in the old SWGAPolitics.com days.

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sammyrayw 1 year, 7 months ago

I personally will not go to Phoebe if I can help it. For them to make the medical field in this area a monpoly is completely wrong. I am past child bearing years, but my children are not. They should have a choice on where to give birth.

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mturpin 1 year, 7 months ago

phoebe has some of the worse ER Doctoers ever, they come in and tell you that what you are telling them is not whats going on..... i have had certain thing wrong with me for over 26 years i belive i know whats wrong with me. Had one who told me when he found out that i smoke that he should just go out and get his shot gun and let me just shoot myself right then... really!!!! went in one time with my sugar at 629 sat there for over 9 hours and all they done was give me some fulids and no insiln and let me go with my sugar still at 629.... come on phoebe you can do better then that. you say that this info was from 2009 really why dont you ask the people that has to go there and see what they have to say ......

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

That's just plain horse manure! We've been in that ER 10 times in 2 years from critical life threatening circumstances, week-ends, days, nights, holidays, you name it. You couldn't receive better, more courteous, more appropriate care anywhere outside of a university teaching institution. I certainly compare the professionals' care to what we found at both MD Anderson and Emory. You are just spouting horse manure. If the AH would permit the vernacular form of fertilizer, I would use it!

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KaosinAlbany 1 year, 7 months ago

I usually go to Columbus if I need surgery. It costs less and I get better quality of care. I do see a particular doctor at PPMH every month and love him but if I do not require emergency surgery then I go to Columbus' St. Francis Hospital for my care. I love them!!

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Cartman 1 year, 7 months ago

You are absolutely right K. I know of many who have gone to Columbus in order to save from paying the exorbitant Phoebe bill. They have all ended up commenting on how much noticeably better care they received when compared to Phoebe.

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

Go where you want. But if you are sick and you extend your arrival time at a hospital by 5 seconds by going to another facility, don't brag on your opinions or judgement in public, you are just telling people how foolish you are. My immediate family has had extensive care in cardiovascular surgery, oncology, Emergency, gastro surgery, gastro treatment and medical floor care at PPMH all satisfactory. They are not perfect but I am in their corner and I want them to continue to improve which I believe they will. Don't throw the baby out with the bath. The primary and only significant rating service for hospitals is called the Joint Commission previously known as the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations from which Phoebe has an unqualified certification. These folks don't use a bunch of reports they found in a data research file for review. Certification and approval come from an on site inspection by trained professionals, usually medical doctors or advanced nurses or related fields. Its a scrotum crunching, mamory gland twisting indepth examination that lasts for an extended period. It strikes fear and humility in the heart of every administrator and supervisor. Unless there is a conditional certification you can believe you are getting pretty good care. Not perfect but pretty good. Other than bad publicity and histrionics, which plays a hell of a role sometimes in marketing, I wouldn't be too bothered by these Leapfrog reports as long as PPMH uses them for self-examination and improvement. It's when they get defensive, which they are not, I would get worried.

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Jacob 1 year, 7 months ago

Dude, its public record that you wasted your vote on R. Paul and tried to convince others to do the same. So if anyone shouldn't "brag on your opinions or judgement in public", its you, hoss. You have zero credibility here.

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

Jacob on judgement the one who was the apologist for Rev. Heard. Yes, I did support Dr. Paul and still support his philosophy of limited and frugal constitutional government. Waste my vote on Paul? Nah. The folks that wasted their votes were the guys that voted for Romney. Don't believe it? Look who's president. You're just a putz!

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Jacob 1 year, 7 months ago

LOL. You must have received some wonderful drugs at Phoebe!

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

No question about it. I assume you aren't satisfied with what you received from Rev. Heard. Then again, perhaps you are.

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Jacob 1 year, 7 months ago

what were you taking when you formed the delusion that was his apologist or his supporter. I am sure that you read through all my past comments, since you are stalking me now, but obviously, comprension isn't your stong suit. By the way, sport, put down the bong for a minute and take note. Ronny ain't the president either. How did you and the other three guys that voted for him enjoy your "victory" party you were planning? LMAO! Did yall trade Star Wars action figures, too?

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

It is difficult to comprehend you. I assume you looked at the tight vote here in GA. 3 votes made a big difference, eh? The unfortunate/fortunate thing about the words chosen leave a clear impression of ourselves. You're a tad choppy on the thought process here with a bit of paranoia. I would suggest excercise and sunshine.

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Jacob 1 year, 7 months ago

"It is difficult to comprehend you."

For you, I'm sure it is. Perhaps you could make some friends who are semi-literate and they can help you out. Until then, I will try to type slower, so that you might be able to keep up.

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

Jacko, type better. That's the answer. Most folks don't grasp your message telepathically as your ward does. By the way, ever think about addressing the issues rather than slinging a "bong" mot.

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Jacob 1 year, 7 months ago

Run along now little one, the adults are discussing issues.

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

Yes, Jacko, I do so that you and the Rev. Heard have some intellectually heavy lifting to engage.

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Jacob 1 year, 7 months ago

Wow, just when I thought you couldn't possibly make yourself more ludicrous or irrelevant... please, kind sir, ask some of your literate friends to assist you..

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

"Ronny ain't the president either. " Who is Ronny, Jacko?

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Jack_Frost 1 year, 7 months ago

JCAHO review is a bare minimum for certification. It is not all encompassing by any means. That certification doesn't make a hospital a "good" hospital by any means, especially when Phoebe, like a lot of other hospitals, clean up their act for JCAHO inspectors, then go right back to business as usual once the whole thing is over.

Yes, I have watched it happen at Phoebe back when I worked there. After I resigned, I swore I would never go back...and I won't.

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

Well, Jack you are a bit dated. It's TJC - the Joint Commission, JCAHO was yesteday. But that's okay. You don't have to stay up on things like that. If your experience with inspections was the bear minimum it means you didn't have a very responsible role or you really weren't plugged in to the process. Is that why you left?

The inspection is not a minimum certification it is the standard of certification which hospitals have to meet. The regulations and requirements are substantial and certainly are all encompassing from administration down to public/patient feedback. Nothing you have said has any relationship to the impact TJC standards/certification have for the actual hospital function or quality.

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honestlysaying 1 year, 7 months ago

Im glad you and your family have received satisfactory care, it is a blessing. To be clear, JCHAO accreditation has been shown to lack in consistency from institution to institution. Additionally studies have clearly shown that quality of hospital care does not improve with JCAHO accreditation, even though one might think it does. There are now other accreditation agencies and it will be interesting to see how they might affect care. When information like this comes to light it should be dealt with in a proactive manner. Being arrogant enough to simply push it to the side is emblematic of the pervasive attitude of the profiteers that run things. This is not about histrionics or bad publicity. Patient care, safety and dignity should always come first, profits not withstanding. The patients and the community that that support this institution or that have no choice but to use it deserve more respect than the response (or lack there of) given. It is simply representative of the culture that runs the system, nothing more or less.

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

" To be clear, JCHAO accreditation has been shown to lack in consistency from institution to institution. " What is clear about that statement? Where is this documentation published? it would certainly be worth the read. TJC requirements are the same for each type of facility. There have been other accrediting agencies for years even some which deal with clinical and disciplinary areas but I am unware of any that reach the substance, value and comprehension of TJC requirements/accreditation. I don't get the read on arrogance from Phoebe.

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honestlysaying 1 year, 7 months ago

There is a plethora of publications and research dealing with JCHAO or "TJC" as you refer to it. A minimal effort to research it will show the controversies. I'm sure you "don't get the read on arrogance from Phoebe". While you seem to be quite the cheerleader for a system that has some rather severe issues, there people that have experienced both sides and know of the ugliness that is rooted deep in the core of the decision making processes and practices and the results that come from them....more than is openly presented to the public and more than admitted by the cheerleaders planted on this or other sites. I digress though, give some effort to a little research about JCHAO, it is not the be all end all and certainly does not acquit Phoebe of the Leapfrog revelations. The point is the responses of brushing these things aside as if they didn't exist or carry importance is part and parcel of how the general public, patients, and employees feel they are treated (in my experience and by those related to me). Cant make it much clearer than that, shouldn't have to.

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

Well, just to be sure we're on the same page pass along a couple of reliable selections from your plethora that you relied on to declare how clear you are. As for giving PPMH a pass if you would read the remarks above to which Doug Patten responded, for all the world it looks like a fairly objective comment. I am a cheerleader for the hospital as well as a lot of things about the area. I am also a rational objective critic. However, PPMH is not a chamber of horrors. Any large hospital has problems and make mistakes. They all have areas for improvement. They step on toes in the community, they piss people off and bruise egos. I see PPMH as a strong positive asset for the community and one of the reasons is because they have been able to operate independent of government politics and old guard feudalism.

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honestlysaying 1 year, 7 months ago

I have no need to insure you on are my page, perhaps you could make your own efforts. I don't speak without knowledge. My knowledge and experience of the attitudes and policies governing the decisions and behaviors of heavy handed profiteers is also real and true. Funny, you seem to be in the distinct minority here. I wont let you make this a personal thing about you, or you and I. Continue your cheerleading and god bless. The rest of us will continue to be an alternative voice.

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

Well, I wasn't thinking of you. I was attempting to take you your wide ranging tangential remarks with a bit of reason. It is not uncomfortable being in the minority opinion in this interchange. It just reinforce's ones points when folks know where you're coming from or what sources you reference. Merry Christmas.

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ObjectiveEyes 1 year, 7 months ago

Dr. Doug Patten, senior vice president of medical affairs at Phoebe, noted that the hospital received high marks from Georgia Trend, which gave Phoebe a No. 8 ranking among the top large hospitals in the state and Phoebe North a No. 7 ranking among the top small hospitals.

Yeah, tell that to my 75 year old father, who after a recent stay, now has a wound vac in a 6 inch open incision on his stomach to assist the healing from MRSA. Note: he didn't have the open incision, wound vac or MRSA when he entered...

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angrypatient 1 year, 7 months ago

you all are complaining but when it comes to meetings or petitions everyone is afraid to stand up to Phoebe or has no time, it is time that we get together and petition Joint Commision to withdraw accreditation from Phoebe until higher standards are in place. Leadership of Phoebe should be changed. I too had a surgical wound and I totally understand all the tears and anger against Phoebe. It is time that we rise and stand up to PHOEBE and Patten.

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angrypatient 1 year, 7 months ago

how about a collective law suit against Phoebe for all the surgical infections? Who is with me?

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

Doesn't look like you have any takers.

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MHjohnson 1 year, 7 months ago

My 91 year old grandmother got MRSA at Phoebe, too. That place is scary.

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DaneGlesak 1 year, 7 months ago

PPMH, a profit, acting as a non-profit, PERIOD. Taxexempt nonprofit hospitals, by definition, have an obligation to the community to provide accessible and affordable health care. However, the very hospitals charged with caring for those most in need are increasingly turning their backs on, and in some cases taking advantage of, uninsured and indigent patients. I have heard complaints from many people who fall within the indigent patient area that receive harrasing phone calls from the billing office at PPMH threatening to have them turned over to collection agencies if they do not pay and when a complaint is reported all you ever hear back is that it must have been a computer glitch. It is not by chance that employees in the billing office are the lowest paid-least trained of all PPMH employees. I pay my bills, on time and I cannot tell you how often I am forced to go personally to the billing office to get something straightened out and am then told that it is fixed, they are sorry and the problem will not happen again only to hear again from them within a short time frame many times calling about that same exact miscommunication that was "supposed" to be taken care of, and to add insult to injury the billing staff has the nerve to talk down to me and show an attitude or make statements to the effect that I am lying and am a sorry person who does not pay my bills. I hate to think of the thousands of people who for whatever reason are not able to keep a close handle on thier payments because of age or a mental issue that go ahead and pay the same "computer generated" bill two or three times and they never know it. I have not once heard of PPMH contacting a person to say they made a payment by mistake and refunding the money. Placing the lowest paid, least trained personnel in these positions allows PPMH to give the excuse, in the EXTREME case they are actually caught trying to collect, that the employee made a mistake and they are completely off the hook. I'd bet the system that keeps up with the swiss accounts and funds that make payroll do not have glitches or accidently spit out "computer generated" paychecks that are 15% of what it should be for the staff in high positions.

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

Just because you are a non-profit entity doesn't mean you can't or shouldn't make money. BTW all hospitals have an obligation to provide care for the indigent.

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agirl_25 1 year, 7 months ago

Dane....I have had problems in the past with the billing department at Phoebe when I have had to have tests done there that Palmyra did not have the scanners for. Phoebe kept sending me bills that I should not have gotten for a balance due. In addition to Medicare I have Tricare4Life and my EOB (Explanation of Benefits) from Tricare clearly stated that I owed nothing after my primary (Medicare) and my secondary (Tricare4Life) had paid. Had the person in the billing office had a brain, or portion thereof, they could have clearly read, as I did, the very words.....BENEFICARY SHARE....Cost Share/CoPay $0.00...meaning nothing was owned.....DOH.......and on the bottom of the EOB it said in bold letters......AMOUNT YOU OWE.........$0.00...........I would again think it meant I owed nothing.......it made me wonder why Phoebe billing could not get it straight. I got tired of the bills but when the threats started I got pissed so visited my insurer online at www.TRICARE4u.com and told the feds Phoebe was picking on me....boo hoo.....sniff sniff....no more problems from Phoebe..smile................ Remember to keep your eyes on the news........FTC v. Phoebe Health Systems is on the United States Supreme Court Docket.......can't wait to hear the outcome.

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agonized 1 year, 7 months ago

I keep all my bills and EOBs, which with my health, leads to quite a file. The reason for this is that eight years ago, my employer switched to a new insurance company and I gave Phoebe that information when I was admitted. The company paid $500 more to Phoebe Putney and sent me a new EOB. The billing department at Phoebe, instead of subtracting $500 from my balance, ADDED it to the balance. I had to fax all the paperwork to the billing department to get it corrected, as well as go to the head of the department. A not-for-profit entity can make a profit, but they have to re-invest it in the business. People got their opinion of Phoebe when the off-shore accounts, Cuban cigars, etc. were revealed.

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agirl_25 1 year, 7 months ago

Interesting...I don't know much about the dark side of Phoebe...don't keep up with much of what went on in the news about it. Hmmm Cubans you say....and off shore accounts.....but as far as the ADDING rather than SUBTRACTING goes, on your account..hahaha.....that I can believe.....so typical of the billing department workers.

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

The lawsuit won't have much impact on the status quo. It will affect future such transactions if at all. Judge Sands' will probably be affirmed in part if not all exempting events at hand. The guess is that states rights' inclination of SCOTUS will prevail and this isn't the issue the otherside wants to antagonize the swing justices with. But as you say, it could be interesting.

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Jacob 1 year, 7 months ago

"It will affect future such transactions if at all. Judge Sands' will probably be affirmed in part if not all exempting events at hand. The guess is that states rights' inclination of SCOTUS will prevail and this isn't the issue the otherside wants to antagonize the swing justices with."

English. Its a language. Look into it.

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FryarTuk 1 year, 7 months ago

Jacko, clear to anyone who reads material higher than comic books. I realize newspapers are written to about a 7th grade level and it will require you to struggle. You might want to start out with Dick and Jane Primers which you probably can get reasonably on line.

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