Quality, Patient Safety and Risk Management

The quality of our care and the safety of our patients are top priorities in the Harrington HealthCare system. We believe that TLC - Total Local Care - begins with making sure we give the best and safest care possible to our patients.

All of us at Harrington - nurses, physicians, technicians, and other staff members - keep safety top of mind. Our employees who treat patients go through regular safety training sessions.

We track our quality and safety record in several important ways, and take action to improve our performance.

Patient Satisfaction

Harrington began assessing its performance for inpatient satisfaction using HCAHPS, the national Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS, pronounced H-Caps), in 2005. HCAHPS is a standardized survey instrument and data collection methodology for measuring patients' perceptions of their hospital experience.

In 2007, Harrington contracted with Press Ganey, an independent company that tracks patient satisfaction scores. Press Ganey now administers the HCAHPS inpatient survey for us and also assesses our outpatient and Emergency Care Center performance.

Through Press Ganey, we are rated on a number of quality and safety issues, and our executives meet regularly to study these results and take action to improve our patient care. Click here to see the results of an independent quality survey about the responsiveness of staff to its patients -- Harrington Hospital outscores both its peer group of 13 hospitals in the Bay State and the Press Ganey database of 2,000 hospitals nationwide.

We learn through these surveys how well we are performing in a number of important categories. Press Ganey surveys ask our patients questions such as how well we explain the tests and treatments we are about to conduct, how well your doctor or nurse listened to you and how courteously our staff treated you. We also are rated on how well we accommodated you and your family while you were here. Other categories include our concern for your privacy, the degree to which we addressed your emotional needs, the degree of safety and security you felt while you were with us, and whether our staff washed their hands before examining you.

Renewed Focus on Quality and Safety

While quality and safety are always top-of-mind at Harrington, we recently renewed our focus on these issues. The management team at Harrington continues to assess processes and redesign our procedures to keep patients as safe as possible. One example is our initiative to provide bar coding which is designed to match the right medication with the right patient.

Our Vice President for Quality, Patient Safety and Risk Management, Kathleen S. Davis, works very closely with our Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Arthur Russo, and the medical staff to achieve the highest possible quality and safety standards.

Trustee Advantage

Our governing bodies are focusing on these issues as part of a Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Trustee Advantage grant the hospital was awarded in early 2009.

Harrington is one of five hospitals in Massachusetts chosen to receive this grant. Recipient hospitals demonstrated they had a strong commitment to quality and safety improvements, a high potential for effective change and a willingness to commit hospital resources beyond funding.

Harrington executives as well as our Board of Directors and the Executive Committee of our medical staff are attending sessions as part of this program and have come away with a renewed commitment to ensuring that our patients receive quality care in the safest possible environment.

Your input is essential

Should you have any questions, concerns or suggestions about our operations, our quality or the safety of our care, please feel free to e-mail us at comments@harringtonhospital.org and we will respond to your concerns.

Patients want and expect clinical excellence and safe and compassionate care and we are working hard to deliver it every single day, for every single patient.