Mary Greeley Medical Center awarded patient safety excellence award


Photo courtesy of Steve Sullivan

Jan Robinson, clinical supervisor for gastrointestinal services; Melanie Vorsteen, lab manager; and Marty Miller, clinical supervisor for ambulatory care. 

Leah Hansen

The Mary Greeley Medical Center in Ames was awarded the 2012 Patient Safety Excellence Award presented by HealthGrades, the only health care ratings organization that bases ratings on clinical outcomes alone.

“We’re pleased about the award, and it continues to give us impatience to try harder, to continue to improve; we’re not done,” said Brian Dieter, president and CEO of Mary Greeley Medical Center.

Mary Greeley Medical Center was one of 11 hospitals in the state of Iowa to receive this award. Mary Greeley Medical Center is in the top 5 percent in the country for overall patient safety outcomes.

“Most critical to us [is] quality and patient safety, in particular,” Dieter said. “They have been measured by an external, independent organization, and they have found that our results are among the best in the nation.”

The importance of this award to staff is seen as a way to validate their work and give them pride in what they do.

“If you stop any employee or physician and say, ‘Does this award change anything that you do?’ other than maybe feeling a little more pride, I think they get satisfaction of knowing that they help patients, they help families, they help each other on a regular basis, on a daily basis,” Dieter said.

“I think our staff … are particularly aware of what a gift that is to provide that help,” he said. Now I think they can say this external group has come in and said not only does what you’re doing make a difference to that patient, it is among the highest quality in the country, and that puts a little extra wind in their sails.”

Karen Kiel Rosser, vice-president of quality at Mary Greeley Medical Center, also recognizes the morale boost this award has brought with it.

“It’s validation that this doesn’t happen by accident, the results that we got,” Kiel Rosser said. “I think the staff gets so accustomed that [patient safety] is the nature of the work that we do, and it’s validation that what they’re doing is really important and it’s recognized. That says more than the awards.”

Dieter realizes the importance of the Patient Safety Excellence Award for hospital staff but also on a bigger scale for the Ames and surrounding communities.

“I think people have quietly thought, ‘I think they do a pretty good job there,’ and I believe we’ve kind of thought that as well, that we are doing pretty well here,” Dieter said. “Now there’s an external light shined on it that says this is more than just a pretty good job. This is truly top-tier performance.”

Kiel Rosser takes pride in the fact Mary Greeley Medical Center in Ames can stay on par with the larger medical centers across the nation.

“We want people to feel confident when they come here that they are receiving evidence-based care, and I think the results, the outcomes that HealthGrades puts out, really are that evidence or that affirmation,” Kiel Rosser said. “We are operating like the major medical centers and teaching institutions around the country. We’re doing the same things, and we’re doing them right.”

Earlier this year, Mary Greeley was also awarded the “Best in the State” five-star rating for general surgery and gastrointestinal care.