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Oct 14: Memorial Health System Ranked #1 in Colorado for Cardiac Surgery - Two Years in a Row

For Immediate Release

October 14, 2008

Memorial’s quality awards rank its care among the top 5% nationally. Findings are based on HealthGrades’ 11th Annual Hospital Quality in America Study

Larry McEvoy, M.D., CEO of Memorial Health System, announced today that Memorial has received the 2009 clinical excellence award for Cardiac Surgery from HealthGrades, the healthcare ratings company. This award places Memorial’s clinical outcomes in the top five percent nationally.

  • #1 in the State of Colorado for Cardiac Surgery 2008-2009
  • Cardiac Surgery Excellence Award 3 years in a row 2007-2008-2009
  • Ranked Among the top 5 percent in the Nation for Cardiac Surgery
  • 5 Star Rated for Coronary Artery Bypass Graft (CABG) Surgery

“Our mission is to provide the highest quality health care,” said McEvoy. “Awards, such as this one from HealthGrades, demonstrate that commitment to excellence and it reflects the dedication and commitment of our team of physicians, physician assistants, nurses, technicians and other professionals in our Heart and Vascular Center.”

These findings were included in the eleventh annual HealthGrades Hospital Quality in America Study, which is the most comprehensive study of its kind, analyzing more than 41 million Medicare hospitalization records from 2005 to 2007 at the nation’s approximately 5,000 non-federal hospitals. According to the study, if all hospitals performed at the level of five-star rated hospitals, 237,420 Medicare deaths could potentially have been prevented over the three years studied. More than half of those preventable deaths were associated with four conditions: sepsis, pneumonia, heart failure and respiratory failure.

While overall death rates declined from 2005 to 2007, the nation’s best-performing hospitals were able to reduce preventable deaths at a much faster rate than poor-performing hospitals, resulting in large state, regional and hospital-to-hospital variations in the quality of patient care, the study found.

Based on the study, HealthGrades today made available its 2009 quality ratings for virtually every hospital in the country at, a Web site designed to help individuals research and compare local healthcare providers.

On its web site, HealthGrades offers, free to consumers, quality ratings of 27 procedures and treatments for virtually every hospital in the country. The Web site is designed so that consumers can easily compare patient outcomes at their local hospitals for procedures ranging from aortic aneurysm repair to bypass surgery. Each hospital receives a star rating based on its patient outcomes in terms of mortality or complication rates for each procedure or treatment. Hospitals with outcomes that are above average to a statistically significant degree receive a five-star rating. Hospitals with average outcomes receive a three-star rating, and hospitals with outcomes that are below average receive a one-star rating. Because no two hospitals or their patients’ risk profiles are alike, HealthGrades employs extensive risk-adjustment algorithms to ensure that it is making analogous comparisons.

About Memorial Health System

Memorial Health System is an award-winning provider of comprehensive health care services in southern Colorado. As a self-supporting city enterprise, Memorial receives no tax subsidy, yet treats everyone regardless of ability to pay. Being locally-owned means all health system revenues are reinvested in leading health care programs and facilities for the community. In addition, Memorial gives back more than $70 million to the community each year in uncompensated care, sponsorships of local not-for-profit organizations and free health information. Memorial Health System consists of Memorial Hospital Central, Memorial Hospital North and the Memorial Hospital for Children, in partnership with The Children’s Hospital.


For more information, please contact the Memorial Health System Public Relations office at (719)365-5235.