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Collaborative Efforts Prove Effective for QHR Client Hospitals Gritman Medical Center and Neighboring Pullman Regional Hospital

August 5, 2008

QHR client hospitals in the Palouse region, a rural area that spans from eastern Washington state into Idaho, offer residents a variety of choices in healthcare. In fact, within a 35-mile radius of Moscow, Idaho, and Pullman, Washington (the centers of the Palouse), five hospitals vie for patients – a healthy competition that benefits consumers. Two Palouse regional hospitals, QHR client Gritman Medical Center and its neighbor eight miles to the West, Pullman Regional Hospital have ranked number one in a recent survey by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in “overall patient satisfaction” in the states of Idaho and Washington, respectively.

According to CMS, the rankings are based on data collected by the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS). The data was collected by surveying patients who had an overnight stay in the hospital from October 2006 to June 2007. Satisfaction levels were based on criteria including nurse and doctor communication, pain management, room cleanliness, quietness of the facility, helpfulness of the hospital staff, explanation of medications, and recovery information upon discharge.

While many hospitals collect information on patient satisfaction, until now there has been no universally applied national standard to gauge quality levels, patient satisfaction levels or pricing information. There has also been no method for publicly reporting this data. This new survey now makes this possible.

“Gritman Medical Center and Pullman Regional Hospital take great pride in sharing these number one rankings and much, much more,” said Gritman Medical Center CEO Jeff Martin. “We also partner on physician recruitment and work together on programs such as Project ACCESS, which helps seniors in rural counties get medical care and social services. We share medical equipment, information and knowledge, as well.”

According to Martin, the two hospitals even collaborated on a publicity campaign when announcing the survey results to their respective communities recently. The campaign included a news release and print, radio and outdoor advertising.

“Ultimately, our patients and their families benefit from the hospitals’ cooperative efforts and good-natured competition,” he added. “When hospitals work together, great things can happen.”

Upon receiving news of Gritman Medical Center’s HCAHPS ranking, QHR Senior Vice President of Operations Bob Vento said: “QHR joins the team at Gritman Medical Center in celebrating both its prestigious award and progressive partnership with Pullman Regional Hospital. QHR strives to cultivate strong, effective, forward-thinking leadership at each of its client hospitals and we’re always proud when one achieves such tremendous success.”

For more information on the CMS/HCAHPS survey, please visit www.hospitalcompare.hhs.gov.

QHR is a family of brands that has provided consulting, management and education resources to hospitals and health systems for three decades. QHR Management Services is the dominant market leader in hospital management resources, with nearly 170 current multi-year clients across the United States. QHR Consulting Services is among the 15 largest healthcare management consulting firms in the United States, with more than 150 consultants providing financial, operational and strategic support to hospitals. Each year, the QHR Learning Institute trains more than 8,000 healthcare professionals to achieve business goals by improving their leadership and management capabilities. For more information, go to www.qhr.com.




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