The Fraser Institute

The Fraser Institute

May 23, 2009 09:00 ET

The Fraser Institute: British Columbia's Best Performing Hospitals Found in Port Moody and Vancouver

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - May 23, 2009) - Eagle Ridge Hospital in Port Moody along with Vancouver's St Paul's Hospital and Vancouver General Hospital are the province's best performing hospitals, according to a new study released today by independent research organization the Fraser Institute.

At the other end of the scale, Ridge Meadows Hospital in Maple Ridge, Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital in Trail, and Campbell River and District General Hospital are among the worst performing hospitals in the province.

The rankings are based on an analysis of the latest two years of data on an aggregate measure of patient mortality, the Hospital Mortality Index. Published in the Institute's Hospital Report Card: British Columbia 2009, this index measures a hospital's performance across nine indicators of mortality. Hospital performance is also compared in the report across 39 other indicators of quality and patient safety.

This peer-reviewed study provides an independent assessment of BC's hospitals using an internationally accepted methodology. The study uses data from the Canadian Institute for Health Information's (CIHI) Discharge Abstract Database. This information is derived from patient records provided to CIHI by all hospitals in British Columbia. All of the information in the hospital report card is available at www.fraserinstitute.org or on the interactive website www.hospitalreportcards.ca.

"If you have a greater chance of dying from a heart attack in one hospital compared to another, or if there is a greater chance of having a foreign object left inside of you following surgery, isn't that something you would want to know?" said Nadeem Esmail, the Institute's director of health system performance studies and co-author of the hospital report card.

"Providing the public with accurate information on the performance of public institutions, whether it's hospitals or schools, is the first step towards encouraging improvement. Both patients and care providers benefit from knowing where the standard of care might be improved and where examples of excellence might be found."

The Hospital Report Card: British Columbia 2009 compares the performance of hospitals on 39 separate indicators of quality (such as death due to a stroke) and patient safety (such as a foreign body left inside a patient during a procedure). The indicators are shown for BC's 95 acute care hospitals from 2001/02 to 2006/07 (where available), comprising more than 2.5 million completely anonymous patient records. The methodology was developed by the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and researchers at Stanford University, and employs a risk-adjustment system developed by 3M. The AHRQ methodology is used in more than a dozen U.S. states as well as British Columbia and Ontario.

Since specialized hospitals may treat more high-risk patients and some patients arrive at hospitals sicker than others, the indicators in the Fraser Institute's hospital report card are risk-adjusted to account for differences in health status among patients.

The Hospital Report Card: British Columbia 2009 allows the public to look up a given condition or procedure and compare death rates, volumes of procedures, rates of adverse events, and utilization rates for their hospital to those of other hospitals in BC.

Provincial health authorities and BC's health minister did not release hospital names for the Fraser Institute's first BC Hospital Report Card in 2008, preventing the public from accessing detailed information on the quality and safety of care provided by BC's hospitals.

"By now releasing the names of the hospitals, BC's government has taken a major step forward in terms of openness and public accountability," Esmail said.

"BC's health minister should be applauded for providing patients, taxpayers, and health care providers the opportunity to make more informed decisions about health care."

The report card provides performance measurements for specific procedures and conditions and specific areas of care as well as broader measures of quality and safety in its 39 indicators.

"While some hospitals may score poorly in certain areas or indicators, they may do better in others. The BC hospital report card allows the public and policy makers to better understand where their local hospital may be doing well and where it may need to improve," Esmail said.



Hospital Mortality Index: 2005/06 & 2006/07
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2005/06 2001/02
& 2006/07 - 2004/05
Score Rank Score Rank
Eagle Ridge Hospital 89.2 1 80.9 11
St. Paul's Hospital 84.1 2 80.1 14
Vancouver General Hospital 83.8 3 84.8 1
Penticton Regional Hospital 83.4 4 81.5 7
Lions Gate Hospital 83.0 5 80.6 12
Prince George Regional Hospital 82.4 6 82.6 5
Vernon Jubilee Hospital 81.9 7 83.6 2
East Kootenay Regional Hospital 81.6 8 77.8 18
Kelowna General Hospital 80.5 9 83.3 3
Victoria General Hospital 79.7 10 82.1 6
Langley Memorial Hospital 79.5 11 73.3 25
Royal Inland Hospital 79.5 12 80.9 9
Royal Columbian Hospital 79.0 13 83.0 4
Surrey Memorial Hospital 78.9 14 79.0 16
Nanaimo Regional General Hospital 78.5 15 76.6 22
Burnaby Hospital 78.1 16 79.8 15
Peace Arch District Hospital 77.7 17 76.9 20
Richmond Hospital 77.3 18 80.9 10
St. Joseph's General Hospital 77.0 19 68.5 26
Dawson Creek and District Hospital 76.9 20 76.2 23
Chilliwack General Hospital 76.3 21 77.6 19
Cowichan District Hospital 76.1 22 78.2 17
Matsqui-Sumas-Abbotsford General Hospital 72.7 23 76.9 21
Campbell River and District General Hospital 72.6 24 80.4 13
Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital 71.7 25 81.4 8
Ridge Meadows Hospital and Health Care Centre 71.0 26 73.4 24


The Fraser Institute is an independent research and educational organization with locations across North America and partnerships in more than 70 countries. Its mission is to measure, study, and communicate the impact of competitive markets and government intervention on the welfare of individuals. To protect the Institute's independence, it does not accept grants from governments or contracts for research. Visit www.fraserinstitute.org.

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