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Morris Hospital ranked 6th in Illinois by Consumer Reports

Dr. Timothy Sanders, anesthesiologist, during a surgical procedure in one of the Morris Hospital operating rooms.
Dr. Timothy Sanders, anesthesiologist, during a surgical procedure in one of the Morris Hospital operating rooms.

Morris Hospital & Healthcare Centers was ranked No. 6 in a Consumer Reports article that scored 192 hospitals in the state on patient safety during and after surgery.

Morris Hospital received 62 of 100 in Consumer Reports’ “Your safer-surgery survival guide.” The highest rating in Illinois was a 70 for OSF Saint James – John W. Albrecht Medical Center in Pontiac.

The article on the ratings is available in the September issue of Consumer Reports. The goal of the article is to provide information so a person can make an educated decision on where to have surgery.

“The staff is proud, and I think they feel good that their hard work is being recognized because they do work hard to make sure patients have a great experience,” said Kim Landers, vice president of patient care services.

“Surgical safety is paramount,” she said. “We do a lot of double-checks, checklists and two sets of eyes verifying before we get started.”

Consumer Reports’ surgery ratings are based on an analysis of billing claims that hospitals submitted to Medicare for patients 65 and older, from 2009 through 2011, and cover 2,463 hospitals in all 50 states, Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico, according to a Consumer Reports news release.

The surgery ratings are based on the percentage of a hospital’s Medicare patients who died in the hospital or stayed longer than expected for their procedure, according to the release. Research shows that mortality and length of stay correlate with complications.

In comparison to some of its neighboring hospitals, Morris Hospital scored much higher. Presence Saint Joseph Medical Center in Joliet received a safety score of 34, Silver Cross Hospital in New Lenox a 40 and Riverside Medical Center in Kankakee a 55.

In 2012, Morris Hospital did a total of 5,046 procedures in the operating room. More than 1,100 of those were in-patient procedures and more than 3,900 were outpatient, Janet Long, public relations manager said. These numbers do not include procedures done in the Gastrointestinal Lab, Vascular Lab, C-sections or invasive radiology procedures. 

Safety procedures are in place at Morris Hospital from hand washing to recovery, Landers said.

“We have checklists to make sure we have the right patient, the right time, the right procedure, and the right equipment,” she said. “Once the patient is in the procedure area, we take a timeout to stop all movement and activity in the room and the team verifies ... and agrees to proceed.”

Morris Hospital received its highest ratings in avoiding bloodstream infections and avoiding surgical-site infections, according to the report. It also rated well in avoiding adverse events in surgical patients. The report states it has room to improve on avoiding readmissions.

Under the patient experience category, it scored very well in overall experience, doctor-patient communication, nurse-patient communication, pain control, help from staff and room cleanliness. Patients surveyed said there needed to be improvement for communication of drug information.

Since this report is based on older information, Landers said the hospital is already working to improve on these areas. Patients receive callbacks within 24 to 48 hours after their procedures to check on their pain, their dressings and to reinforce the information they were given on their healing instructions and medications.

The surgical department staff, including physicians and all the nursing staff, is the reason why Morris Hospital excels compared to others, Landers said. They take a continued interest in their fields staying up to date on the latest requirements and guidelines.

In addition, they work as a team to continue to succeed, as well as improve if they are not meeting a requirement and put interventions in place.

“The Morris community should be proud of this hospital,” Landers said. “They should feel good about coming here for their procedure.”

To read the Consumer Reports article and see the ratings, visit

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