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Organization Grades Hospitals on Their Level of Safety

Searchable online guide assigns letter grades to nearly 3,000 general hospitals.

November 29, 2023

The Leapfrog Group, an independent U.S. nonprofit advocate for patient safety, recently released its fall 2023 Hospital Safety Grades, which assigns a letter grade to nearly 3,000 general hospitals on how well they prevent medical errors, accidents, and infections.

Utah was found to be the state with the highest percentage of A-grade hospitals in the country this fall. The rest of the top ten states with the most A hospitals were Virginia, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Connecticut, Montana, Tennessee, Florida, and Texas. States with the least favorable performance were Vermont, Wyoming, Delaware, North Dakota, and Washington, D.C. In North Dakota, no hospitals earned an A grade.

The latest grades also reveal how well hospitals are reducing healthcare-acquired infections (HAIs) since the end of the COVID-19 pandemic. For the most recent cycle, nearly 30% of hospitals earned an A grade, 24% earned a B, 39% earned a C, 7% earned a D, and less than 1% earned an F.

“Now that we have pre- and post-pandemic data for patient safety measures, we are encouraged by the improvement in infections and applaud hospitals for reversing the disturbing infection spike we saw during the pandemic,” said Leah Binder, The Leapfrog Group president and CEO. “However, there’s still more work to be done. It’s deeply concerning that patient reports about their health care experience continues to decline.” 

The latest data also showed that over 85% of the included hospitals improved performance on at least one of the three dangerous infections included within the Hospital Safety Grade: methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), central line-associated bloodstream infections (CLABSI), and catheter-associated urinary tract infections (CAUTI).

The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade also includes five patient experience measures that evidence suggests are closely associated with patient safety issues: nurse communication, doctor communication, staff responsiveness, communication about medicine, and discharge information. Nationally, patient experience scores worsened for the second year in a row, and all states experienced a significant decline in reported patient experience from fall 2021 to fall 2023.

To see how a specific hospital scored for fall 2023, head over to the Hospital Safety Grade website to search for the hospital by its location: hospitalsafetygrade.org.

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