ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Several South Georgia hospitals are responding to scorecards released earlier this week by The Leapfrog Group, a nonprofit watchdog organization.
Tifton Regional Health System and the Colquitt Regional Medical Center were both awarded 'A' grades from the group.
In a statement, Tift Regional hospital officials said it's because of their efforts to keep patients safe from infections, errors and accidents.
While many received top scores, other hospitals in our area did not.
Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital, Phoebe Sumter Medical Center and Crisp Regional Medical Center each received a 'C' rating.
WALB reached out to Phoebe officials.
One of the low scores was with the number of catheter-associated urinary tract infections. Phoebe explained Leapfrog used statistics from over a year ago.
During this fiscal year, Chief Medical Officer Dr. Steven Kitchen said the hospital had a 45 percent reduction in those UTI numbers.
"Last month for the first time, we had zero," explained Kitchen. "So, we feel like we have the right methods in place to drive those numbers down, but like I say there is always the opportunity for improvement."
In August of 2016, the hospital added additional rounds of checklists and protocols that hospital staff said has proven to make a difference.
Phoebe officials said the scores calculated by The Leapfrog Group are often not fully representative of the overall care patients get.
Officials from Phoebe released the following statement:
WALB looked into how The Leapfrog Group collects that information, and this is what we found.
Those scores are calculated using publicly available data, meaning the hospitals can send it to Leapfrog, or the organization can get it through various third parties like the Center for Disease Control.
We do know that hospitals are often charged licensing fees to have their rankings, but at this time it is unclear if that's the case with Leapfrog.
Tift Regional said they volunteered to participate in the Leapfrog Group's survey; Phoebe officials told us they chose not to participate.
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