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Astria Regional Medical Center Medical & Cardiac Center Receives Statewide Recognition for Improving Patient Safety

Washington State Hospital Association’s “Achieving Best Care” award goes only to top-performing hospitals

YAKIMA — Astria Regional Medical Center Medical & Cardiac Center was recognized for outstanding achievement in improving patient safety at the 82nd Annual Meeting of the Washington State Hospital Association (WSHA) in Seattle.

Astria Regional Medical Center earned the 2014 “Washington State Hospital Association Achieving Best Care” award for its efforts to decrease patient harm through their participation in the Partnership for Patients national initiative – a nationwide collaborative effort to reduce the number of hospital-acquired conditions by 40 percent and hospital readmissions by 20 percent by the end of 2014.

“Patients are our number one priority,” said Veronica Knudson, CEO, Astria Regional Medical Center. “We’re glad to have our efforts recognized by our peers, but more important, we’re doing this for our patients. In collaboration with the Medical Staff, our safety initiative is focused on creating a safe and reliable environment for our patients. Everyone in the hospital is involved in education, promotion and use of safety behaviors, and we meet regularly to identify ways we can make our hospital even safer.”

The National Partnership for Patients initiative focuses on reducing harm in 10 key areas:

  1. Adverse drug events
  2. Catheter-associated urinary tract infections
  3. Central line-associated blood stream infections
  4. Injuries from falls and immobility
  5. Obstetrical adverse events
  6. Pressure ulcers
  7. Surgical site infections
  8. Venous thromboembolism
  9. Ventilator-associated pneumonia
  10. Preventable readmissions

The “Achieving Best Care” award was presented to Astria Regional Medical Center and 13 other WSHA hospitals that achieved the highest scores on harm reduction in the key areas. The scoring was based on the size of the hospital, the key strategies in which they were participating, and if they were in the top one fourth of high performing hospitals in the state. All of the top performers reached the Partnership for Patients goal of reducing harm by 40% and readmissions by 20% and many also reached a goal of zero harm over a sustained period. Astria Regional Medical Center is one of 14 WSHA hospitals to receive this award.

“The Partnership for Patients contract has enabled us to make impressive improvements in patient safety in all the participating hospitals,” said WSHA Senior Vice President for Patient Safety Carol Wagner. “Through extensive education, best-practice implementation, and rapid response to problems, the hospitals doing this work are helping to test and model the best ways to keep patients safe in the hospital. It benefits their patients, but it also benefits all patients.”

About Astria Regional Medical Center Medical & Cardiac Center
Astria Regional Medical Center, a 214-bed facility located in Central Washington, provides a full complement of medical services including the valley’s only open-heart surgery, advanced imaging, comprehensive robotics, state-of-the-art neurosurgery, and CARF-accredited inpatient rehabilitation. Staffed by approximately 750 employees, the hospital offers a wide array of inpatient and outpatient services. The hospital provides one of only two single stay cardiac units in the State of Washington. Astria Regional Medical Center is a Level I Cardiac and Level II Stroke center, with a Level III trauma designation, and a commitment to continuous reinvestment in state-of-the-art technology.

Partnership for Patients Background
The Partnership for Patients initiative is being lead locally by the Washington State Hospital Association (WSHA) and nationally by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Washington State Hospital Association was one of 26 health care organizations in the U.S. to be awarded a Hospital Engagement Network (HEN) contract by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in 2011.

As a Partnership for Patients HEN, WSHA and the Washington State Medical Association have partnered to support hospitals and medical practices in Washington and Oregon in their efforts to reduce patient harm. By joining this initiative, hospitals and health care providers across the nation pledged to make health care safer, more reliable and less costly – ultimately saving thousands of lives and millions of dollars. WSHA provides member hospitals with trainings, data, tools and other resources to help them reach these patient safety goals.

More information on the WSHA Partnership for Patients can be found at

About the Washington State Hospital Association
The Washington State Hospital Association is a membership organization representing 99 community hospitals and several other health-related organizations. The association provides issues management and analysis, information, advocacy and other services.

In 2005, WSHA launched the Patient Safety program to help hospitals improve patient safety by supporting the wide-spread adoption of evidence-based clinical practices. WSHA works to improve the health of the people of the state by becoming involved in all matters affecting the delivery, quality, accessibility, affordability and continuity of health care.