Iowa Methodist, Iowa Lutheran and Methodist West receive Blue Distinction® Center Plus designation for quality
March 25, 2013
UnityPoint Health - Des Moines
Blue Distinction ® designation helps consumers to identify high-performing hospitals
Wellmark® Blue Cross® and Blue Shield® has named Iowa Methodist, Iowa Lutheran and Methodist West as a Blue Distinction Centers Plus (+). The Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care® program is a national designation awarded by Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies to medical facilities that have demonstrated expertise in delivering quality specialty care - and has recently expanded to include more robust quality measures focused on improved patient health and safety as well as new cost-efficiency measures.
• Iowa Methodist was recognized Blue Distinction Center Plus (+) for Spine Surgery.
• Iowa Lutheran was recognized as Blue Distinction Center Plus (+) for Knee and Hip Replacement.
• Methodist West was recognized as Blue Distinction Center Plus (+) for Spine Surgery along with Knee and Hip Replacement.
"The Blue Distinction Center designation places a high value on research and evidence-based health outcomes," said Timothy Gutshall, M.D., Wellmark Vice President and Chief Medical Officer. "It also celebrates and affirms the excellence and commitment of the physicians and staff of these health systems in combining state-of-the-art surgery with state-of-the-art care."
Since 2006, consumers, medical providers and employers have relied on the Blue Distinction program to identify hospitals delivering quality care in Bariatric Surgery, Cardiac Care, Complex and Rare Cancers, Knee and Hip Replacements, Spine Surgery, and Transplants. The selection criteria used to evaluate facilities were developed with input from the medical community, and include general quality and safety metrics plus program specific metrics. UnityPoint Health - Des Moines is proud to have met the rigorous selection criteria set by the Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care programs.
"These designations are a tribute to the dedicated teams of physicians, nurses, orthopaedists and therapists who have helped develop our hospitals' comprehensive programs in hip, knee and spine surgeries, " said Eric Crowell, UnityPoint Health - Des Moines President and CEO. "Their clinical expertise in orthopaedics care has resulted in better overall results for our patients."
Research confirms that the newly designated Blue Distinction Centers and Blue Distinction Centers+ demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients, with lower rates of complications and readmissions than their peers. Blue Distinction Centers+ are also more than 20 percent more cost-efficient. The program provides consumers with tools to help them make better informed healthcare decisions, and these results enable employers, working with their local Blue Plan, to tailor benefits to meet their individual quality objectives.