Tonasket, WA, November 2015
On November 19, 2015, leaders from the rural health community from across the country
celebrate National Rural Health Day in recognition of the tremendous accomplishments that have
been achieved in rural healthcare this year. In support of this recognition, iVantage Health Analytics
has developed a data-driven program designed to identify excellence across a broad spectrum of
indicators relevant to hospital performance and patient care.
National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health (NOSORH) has partnered with iVantage to recognize 37 Washington hospitals as having reached top quartile performance status in Quality, Outcomes, Patient Satisfaction, and Financial Strength compared to all acute care hospitals in the nation. The rankings have been designated by the Hospital Strength INDEXTM, the assessment of
hospital performance in the country to include all rural providers.
North Valley Hospital (NVH), along with only 7 other Washington hospitals, ranked as a top quartile performer in the Quality-Based pillar (or category) as part of that assessment.
This pillar includes patient care indicators for Heart Attack (AMI), Heart Failure, Pneumonia, andother processes of care. The 6 other hospitals to receive this state recognition were Peacehealth Medical Center, Mason General, Kittitas Valley Community, Toppenish, and Morton General Hospital.
10 Washington hospitals, including North Valley Hospital, were recognized for excellence in the Patient Satisfaction pillar also. NVH follows Medicare’s mandate to participate in the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Provider and System (HCAHPS). 50% of their hospitalized patients receive a call from a national patient satisfaction surveyor within 42 days of being discharged. “Would you recommend NVH to your friends and family?” was the survey question used as the marker for this recognition. From 9/1/14 to 9/1/15 97% of the patients surveyed gave a “thumbs up” answer about recommending NVH to their friends and family.
North Valley Hospital CEO, Mike Zwicker and the entire staff would like to thank its patients and family members for taking the time to answer the questions when a surveyor calls. The data is used to identify areas to improve our patient’s experience and to support the quality care we give. These calls take about 10 minutes and come to us from Chattanooga, Tennessee and Baltimore, Maryland.
The National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health (NOSORH) was established in 1995 to assist State Offices of Rural Health in their efforts to improve access to, and the quality of, health care for America’s 61 million rural citizens. NOSORH enhances the capacity of SORHs to do this by supporting the development of state and community rural health leaders; creating and facilitating state, regional and national partnerships that foster information sharing and spur rural health-related programs/activities; and enhancing access to quality healthcare services in rural communities“
These top quartile performers should take great pride in this recognition. It showcases their commitment to continuous performance analysis and improvement. On this occasion of National Rural Health Day, it’s an honor to celebrate their achievement as they continue to serve their communities despite the many market, regulatory and financial pressures they face.” said Michael Topchik, senior vice president of iVantage Health Analytics. The Hospital Strength INDEX™ captures performance metrics for more than 4,000 acute care hospitals, including over 1,300 rural and Critical Access Hospitals.
NVHD educates and trains staff to be prepared for Ebola
Tonasket, November 2014: With the arrival of Ebola Viral Disease to the United States, North Valley Hospital District is responding quickly with a mandatory education and training session for our nearly 230 member staff. Although the chances of Ebola reaching the Okanogan County is unlikely, we feel that it’s very important to circumvent the problems that the Texas hospital incurred with staff being unprepared to handle patients with Ebola and want to mitigate any risk there may be to our staff and community. North Valley Hospital is in constant contact with the Okanogan County Public Health Department who have been in regular communication and receiving updates from the CDC. While this situation requires extensive preparation, there is no reason to believe that there will be widespread Ebola transmission in the United States.
Here are some of the ways that NVHD is preparing for the Ebola Viral Disease:
- Coordination and regular communication with the County Public Health Department and ongoing preparations
- Coordination with local primary care physicians
- Training with our intake staff on triage and screening to ensure any individual presenting with symptoms that are similar to Ebola are properly screened
- Staff training of the proper use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
- We have an on-site Infection Preventionist Nurse (Marcia Naillon, RN) who is knowledgeable and dedicated to ensuring the safety of our staff and community
- We have a committee comprised of our CEO, Lab Manager, Director of Nursing, Infection Preventionist and Safety Officer meeting frequently to ensure our facility is prepared.
Ebola is not being spread from person to person in the United States and it is not likely in the future. The strong infrastructure of our Public Health and Health Care System in the U.S. is highly qualified to stop the transmission of Ebola, just as it stops the transmission of many other communicable diseases. We are absolutely confident that Ebola will not spread as it has in West Africa because of our sophisticated health care system and we want our community to know that we are working closely with our regional health care system to be prepared.