In-Depth: Hospital rating survey that gives RGH a ‘D’

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. — During the nurses strike at Rochester General Hospital, there has been a lot of talk about a recent survey that gave RGH a “D” rating. Many of you are wondering how that rating was calculated, how it compares to other local hospitals and what it all means for patients.

While walking with nurses on the picket line, Rochester City Councilman Michael Patterson brought up the “D” rating saying the community deserves better. “You’ve got a D-rated hospital, what we need is a hospital that’s not D-rated,” he told News10NBC.

Who rated RGH a D and how?

The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grades are assigned to nearly 3,000 general acute-care hospitals across the nation twice per year. They are calculated using 30 national performance measures from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the Leapfrog Hospital Survey and information from other supplemental data sources. The performance measures produce a single letter grade representing a hospital’s overall performance in keeping patients safe from preventable harm and medical errors.

The most recent grades were released in the spring of 2023. Here’s how our local hospitals stacked up:

Rochester General Hospital: D
Strong Memorial Hospital: C
Highland Hospital: C
Geneva General Hospital: C
FF Thompson Hospital: C
Noyes Hospital: C
Unity Hospital: B

So, what puts RGH at a D? According to the survey, the hospital has a higher-than-average number of safety problems including more patients with bed sores, falls with injuries and blood clots. The other big problem is staffing. It has much higher than average scores when it comes to effective leadership, communication with doctors and nurses and the responsiveness of hospital staff.

The striking nurses say, that’s because there’s not enough of them. ”We are ready to negotiate, we are ready to make our hospital safe again for our patients and our community,” says Stacey Judson, an Emergency Department nurse at RGH.

For the sake of the community, Councilman Patterson is hoping that happens quickly. “Get in the room and come to a happy medium because this community needs and deserves a highly rated hospital and that ain’t Rochester General right now; a D-rated hospital is better than no hospital but who the hell wants to go to a D-rated hospital,” he tells News10NBC.

To search a hospital’s rating and read about the information about how it was reached: