Dickinson County Healthcare System earns its 12th consecutive Leapfrog “A” Hospital Safety Grade

(Dickinson County, MI) The Leapfrog Group released its 2018 Spring Hospital Safety Grades and once again, Dickinson County Healthcare System (DCHS) has received an “A”.  The Hospital Safety Grade scores hospitals on how safe they keep their patients from errors, injuries, accidents, and infections.  In “A” grade hospitals, patient safety is a top priority.  For twelve consecutive terms, DCHS has earned an “A” grade, making it the only UP hospital to do so.

John Schon, DCHS Administrator-CEO, said, “I am very proud that DCHS has again received an “A” Grade for Patient Safety from the Leapfrog Group!  I am also very proud that DCHS has been able to maintain our “A” Grade since the inception of the Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade review in 2012 and that DCHS is one of only three hospitals in the State of Michigan to have also received “Straight A’s” for Patient Safety since inception of the Leapfrog Patient Safety Grading System.  Schon went on to say “that our Medical Staff and Hospital staffs deserve all the credit due to their never-ending dedication to provide our patients the safest and highest quality patient care we can offer.  This recognition is again verification that our teams approach to patient care works and is the result of our strong physician and staff engagement in the caring for our patients.”

Strong healthcare teams reduce infection rates, put checks in place to prevent mistakes, and ensure strong lines of communication between hospital staff, patients, and families.  Some hospitals don’t have teams that work well together, or good leadership to ensure that patient safety is the number one priority. When one person makes a mistake, there isn’t a good team ready to catch that mistake. Patients can experience dangerous complications, recovery is slower, and some patients even die unnecessarily.

Many hospitals in this country have safety records that wouldn’t be tolerated in any other industry. The statistics are alarming:

  • As many as 440,000 people die every year from hospital errors, injuries, accidents, and infections
  • Every year, 1 out of every 25 patients develops an infection while in the hospital—an infection that didn’t have to happen.
  • A Medicare patient has a 1 in 4 chance of experiencing injury, harm or death when admitted to a hospital
  • Today alone, more than 1000 people will die because of a preventable hospital error

The letter grade scoring system allows consumers to quickly assess the safety of their local hospital, and choose the safest hospital to seek care.

The Safety Grade includes 27 measures, all currently in use by national measurement and reporting programs. The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade methodology has been peer-reviewed and published in the Journal of Patient Safety.

Leapfrog works under the guidance of an Expert Panel to select appropriate measures and develop a scoring methodology. The Expert Panel is made up of patient safety experts from across the country:

  • David Bates, M.D., Harvard University
  • Andrew Bindman, M.D., University of California, San Francisco
  • Jennifer Daley, M.D., F.A.C.P.
  • Matthew D McHugh, Ph.D., J.D., M.P.H., R.N., C.R.N.P., F.A.A.N., University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing
  • Arnold Milstein, M.D., M.P.H., Stanford University
  • Peter Pronovost, M.D., Ph.D., F.C.C.M.
  • Patrick Romano, M.D., M.P.H., University of California, Davis
  • Sara Singer, Ph.D., Harvard University
  • Arjun Srinivasan, M.D., CAPT U.S. Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Tim Vogus, Ph.D., Vanderbilt University

The Expert Panel selected 27 measures of publicly available hospital safety data, analyzed the data and determined the weight of each measure based on evidence, opportunity for improvement and impact. Information from secondary sources supplemented any missing data to give hospitals as much credit as possible toward their Safety Grade.

A hospital must have enough safety data available for our experts to issue them a letter grade. Hospitals missing more than six process measures or more than five outcome measures are not graded. All hospitals are encouraged to voluntarily report additional safety data through the Leapfrog Hospital Survey, but they are not required to do so to receive a Safety Grade.

Congratulations to the DCHS Team for your consistency and commitment to excellence!



About Dickinson County Health System:  Servicing Northern Wisconsin and the Central Upper Peninsula for more than 65 years, Dickinson County Healthcare System (DCHS) is a Community Hospital with a team of more than 90 active physicians and each year serves over 200,000 patients. DCHS employs more than 850 staff members, is the major employer in the Dickinson County area, and is a large contributor to the economic wellbeing of our community.  DCHS has been acknowledged by several independent healthcare analytics agencies for exceptional patient safety and services. The safety ratings are a testament to how well the hospital and its physicians care for its patients and confirm the progress towards keeping the community safe and healthy. 

Media Contacts:


Joe Rizzo – Public Relations Manager

w: (906) 776-5671


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