BENNINGTON, VT—January 4, 2018—Southwestern Vermont Medical Center (SVMC) has received the federal government’s highest and most prestigious rating—five stars—for Overall Hospital Quality. SVMC is the only hospital in Vermont and among just 6 percent of hospitals nationwide to earn the highest rank from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).
“We are proud of our dedicated teams at SVMC for their tireless commitment to our mission of providing exceptional care and comfort to the people we serve,” said Thomas A. Dee, the president and CEO of Southwestern Vermont Health Care (SVHC), of which SVMC is a part. “Heartfelt thanks to our medical staff, employees, and volunteers for creating an environment of patient-centered care.”
CMS launched its overall quality rating system in July 2016. Each year, hospital ratings are calculated based on a weighted average of up to 57 quality indicators. The overall rating shows how well each hospital performed when compared to other hospitals in the U.S. Results are published on the CMS website at www.medicare.gov/hospitalcompare. Hospital Compare overall ratings can provide a starting point for consumers to compare a hospital to others both locally and nationwide.
The five-star rating is reserved for the highest performing hospitals and is based on patient experience scores reported in the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) survey. The survey covers topics such as how well doctors and nurses communicate with patients, how responsive hospital staff are to patient needs, how clean and quiet hospital environments are, and how well patients are prepared for post-hospital settings. The system also evaluates clinical measures in the areas of patient safety, mortality, readmissions, effectiveness of care, timeliness of care, and efficient use of medical imaging to assign the star rating. SVMC earned four stars in 2016.
This fall, the Centers for Living and Rehabilitation, SVHC’s skilled nursing facility, was also awarded the 5-star designation from CMS. The number of facilities that can be given the highest rating is capped at 20 percent per state, so the rating is a reflection of both how well CLR is performing and how it compares to others in the state. To review ratings from nursing homes locally and nationwide, consumers can visit www.medicare.gov/nursinghomecompare.