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Rowan Medical Center earns distinctions

SALISBURY — Novant Health Rowan Medical Center in Salisbury has received several distinctions recently, including awards for patient safety and heart attack care.
• Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina has named the hospital as a Blue Distinction Center in knee and hip replacement.
The Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care program is a national designation awarded to medical facilities that have proven success in delivering quality care in key treatment areas. The program recently expanded to include enhanced quality measures focused on improved patient health and safety, as well as new cost-efficiency measures.
Newly designated Blue Distinction Centers demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients, with lower rates of complications and readmissions than their peers, according to Rowan Medical Center.
Blue Distinction Centers also are more than 20 percent more cost-efficient, the hospital said.
“Our goal is to help customers access the best quality health care and understand that high quality care does not have to cost more,” said Lisa Cade, vice president network management for BCBSNC. “We are pleased to recognize those hospitals that show they share these goals.”
Dari Caldwell, hospital president, called the distinction a significant accomplishment.
“It means that residents in our area can trust us to provide consistent, quality care,” Caldwell said.
• The American Heart Association has awarded the hospital the 2013 Mission: Lifeline Bronze Receiving Quality Achievement Award. The award recognizes medical centers nationwide that provide a high standard of care for patients who have suffered the most severe heart attacks.
“Residents can be confident that they will receive quality care for heart attacks at our medical center,” Caldwell said. “This national recognition demonstrates the commitment of our staff to providing lifesaving cardiac care, as well as preventing future heart attacks.”
To achieve this award, medical centers must have 85 percent or greater compliance for treatment in several key areas, including the ability to open a blocked artery and restore blood flow to the heart within 90 minutes or less. 
Additional recognition criteria include ensuring patients receive long-term therapies to reduce future heart attacks, such as cholesterol-lowering drugs, aspirin regimens, ACE inhibitors and beta-blockers. 
Patients who smoke must also receive tobacco cessation counseling before leaving the medical center.
• The Leapfrog Group, an independent national nonprofit run by employers and other large purchasers of health benefits, recognized the hospital with another “A” Hospital Safety Score.
Leapfrog assigns A, B, C, D or F grades to U.S. hospitals based on preventable medical errors, injuries accidents and infections.
The Hospital Safety Score was compiled under the guidance of the nation’s leading experts on patient safety.
Safety is top priority, Caldwell said.
“It is a team effort between staff and physicians at our medical center to continually deliver safe and quality care for our patients,” she said.
To see Rowan Medical Center’s scores as they compare nationally and locally, go to www.hospitalsafetyscore.org or download the free mobile app, available at www.hospitalsafetyscore.org.

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