Penn Highlands DuBois Receives VHA Mid-Atlantic Award

April 07, 2015


for Achieving Performance Excellence

Penn Highlands DuBois has been named one of three platinum winners, the highest level of recognition, by VHA Mid-Atlantic for extraordinary achievement of clinical quality and patient safety among health care organizations. Shown with the award are, in front from left, Carole Berger, Lyle McGranahan, Sherry McKee, director; Steve Rutledge, Jocelyn Long, Kim Fike and Karen Hrin, all of Performance Improvement at PH DuBois. In back are Janice Hamscher, PH DuBois chief nursing officer; John Sutika, PH DuBois president; Mark Tino and Kim Schneider, both of VHA; Dr. Gary DuGan, chief medical officer of Penn Highlands Healthcare; Dr. Russ Cameron, PH DuBois chief medical officer; and Francis Iorfido, director of Pharmacy at PH DuBois.

Penn Highlands DuBois has been named one of three platinum winners, the highest level of recognition, by VHA Mid-Atlantic for extraordinary achievement of clinical quality and patient safety among health care organizations in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

VHA Mid-Atlantic has recognized Penn Highlands DuBois for achieving excellence in clinically recognized performance measures with the 2014 VHA Mid-Atlantic Achieving Patient Care Excellence, or APEX, award.

VHA Mid-Atlantic is one of twelve regions in VHA Inc., a national network of not-for-profit health systems. The regional offices provide local market expertise and guide members with solutions that improve their clinical, operational and financial performance.

In VHA Mid-Atlantic, 90 acute care facilities were eligible to participate in the 2014 APEX award program. Each year, performance improvement specialists from the region’s hospitals and health care systems develop criteria for the awards. 

For 2014, awards were based on exceptional performance for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid quality measures and eight special focus areas. Organizations achieving superior performance for two or more of the measures earned award level placement, with platinum level being the highest level of recognition followed by gold and silver.

Penn Highlands DuBois is being recognized for having zero central line and ventilator associated infections for a 12 month period; a low surgical site infection rate for hip, knee and hysterectomy surgeries for a 12 month period; and a low VTE (blood clot in the legs or lungs) rate for six months or more.

“We are extremely proud of our achievement and award,” Sherry McKee, director of Performance Improvement at PH DuBois, said. “Our staff at Penn Highlands DuBois have worked hard to get these incredible results by using evidence based practices sometimes known as ‘bundles’ for reducing or eliminating hospital associated events and infections.”

A ceremony was held on March 23 in St Camillus Hall at PH DuBois West where Kim Schneider and Mark Tino, both from VHA presented the award.

“Being only one of three hospitals to receive this platinum award from VHA Mid-Atlantic is a true reflection of our staff’s dedication to our patients,” Dr. Gary DuGan, chief medical office for Penn Highlands Healthcare, said. “I commend everyone who brought PH DuBois to this level of achievement.”

“The APEX award provides well-deserved and appropriate recognition to our VHA Mid-Atlantic members for their superior clinical performance,” said Ken Braithwaite, senior vice president/executive officer, VHA Mid-Atlantic region. “Their achievements exemplify the dedication of their organization to provide exemplary clinical care and a culture of continuous quality improvement. We congratulate their outstanding achievement and celebrate their success.”