YONKERS– Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla was judged one of the 10 worst hospitals nationwide.
St. Joseph’s Medical Center and St. John’s Riverside Hospital, both in Yonkers, and Lawrence Hospital in Bronxville were only a bit better in an upcoming issue of Consumer Reports, the nonprofit consumer research and product-testing organization based in Yonkers.
Detailed ratings are at ConsumerReports.org .
The ratings — published in the August issue of the magazine and online– are based on surveys of millions of patients nationwide, plus information from government and independent sources on patient outcomes, such as re-admissions, infections, complications, mortality, and certain hospital practices including CT scans, communications about medicines, and electronic record-keeping.
However, the ratings cover only 1,159 hospitals in 44 states and include only about 18% of hospitals. In Southern Westchester, for example, Burke Rehabilitation Hospital, Mt. Vernon Hospital, and Rye Hospital Center have not yet been rated. (The ratings include only 18 percent of U.S. hospitals because data on patient harm still isn’t reported fully or consistently nationwide.)
Other local hospitals did somewhat better in the ratings but still were rated with scores below 50 on a scale of 1-100. They are: White Plains Hospital Center and Sound Shore Medical Center of Westchester in New Rochelle.
“Hospitals that volunteer safety information, regardless of their score, deserve credit, since the first step in safety is accountability,” says John Santa, M.D., M.P.H., director of the Consumer Reports Health Ratings Center in Yonkers. But Dr. Santa also notes: “The safety scores provide a window into our nation’s hospitals, exposing worrisome risks that are mostly preventable. A consumer who enters a hospital thinking it’s a place to get better deserves to know if that is indeed the case. But the fact that consumers can’t get a full picture of most hospitals in the U.S. underscores the need for more public reporting.”