Patient Safety Data Source

Patient safety measures how well a hospital safeguards patients from injuries, infections and other complications based on 14 serious, potentially preventable adverse events during their hospital stay.

Patient Safety Ratings & Excellence Awards

Patient safety ratings evaluate the safety and quality of care at a hospital by measuring the rate at which serious, potentially preventable complications and adverse events occurred in the hospital. Healthgrades uses the following data sources for patient safety ratings and awards:

  • 2021: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for years 2017 through 2019. Updated 5/11/2021.
  • 2020: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for years 2016 through 2018. Updated 6/16/2020.
  • 2019: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for years 2015 through 2017. Updated 5/14/2019.

About Patient Safety Indicators

Patient safety indicators are serious, potentially preventable complications that occur during a patient’s hospital stay.

Healthgrades patient safety ratings look at 14 types of serious, potentially preventable complications. Thirteen of the 14 indicators are measured as rates (observed and expected number of events). The 14th indicator—foreign object left in patient’s body during a surgery or procedures—simply lists the number of events that occurred.

For a description of how each rating or count is calculated, see Healthgrades Patient Safety Ratings and Patient Safety Excellence Award Methodology.

Healthgrades translates patient safety indicators from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ, shown in parentheses below) to a simplified description as listed here.

  • Death following a serious complication after surgery (Death Rate Among Surgical Inpatients With Serious Treatable Complications)
  • Death in procedures where mortality is usually very low (Death Rate in Low-Mortality Diagnosis Related Groups)
  • Pressure sores or bed sores acquired in the hospital (Pressure Ulcer Rate)
  • Collapsed lung resulting from a procedure or surgery in or around the chest (Iatrogenic Pneumothorax Rate)
  • Catheter-related bloodstream infections acquired in the hospital (Central Venous Catheter-Related Bloodstream Infection Rate)
  • In-hospital fall resulting in hip fracture (In-Hospital Fall With Hip Fracture Rate)
  • Excessive bruising or bleeding as a consequence of a procedure or surgery (Perioperative Hemorrhage or Hematoma Rate)
  • Acute kidney dysfunction (requiring dialysis) following surgery (Postoperative Physiologic and Metabolic Derangement Rate)
  • Respiratory failure following surgery (Postoperative Respiratory Failure Rate)
  • Deep blood clots in the lungs or legs during the surgical stay (Perioperative Pulmonary Embolism or Deep Vein Thrombosis Rate)
  • Bloodstream infection following surgery (Postoperative Sepsis Rate)
  • Breakdown of abdominal incision site (Postoperative Wound Dehiscence Rate)
  • Accidental cut or puncture resulting from a procedure of the abdominopelvic region (AbdominopelvicAccidental Puncture or Laceration Rate)
  • Foreign objects left in body during a surgery or procedure (Retained Surgical Item or Unretrieved Device Fragment Count)

Date Last Updated: May 11, 2021