UCHealth named among top 15 health systems in nation

ANN ARBOR, Mich. — IBM Watson Health (NYSE:  IBM) has named the UCHealth system of hospitals and clinics among the top 15 health-care systems in the country.

UCHealth, headquartered in Aurora, operates hospitals in numerous locations in Northern Colorado and the Boulder Valley, including Fort Collins, Loveland, Longmont, Greeley, and Broomfield. UCHealth was listed among the five top large systems.

The 15 Top Health Systems annual study is based on overall organizational performance. Formerly known as the Truven Health Analytics 15 Top Health Systems, the study points a spotlight on health systems using publicly available clinical, operational, and patient satisfaction data. It has been conducted annually since 2008.

This year’s study quantitatively measured performance among and between the individual hospitals within a system to determine the consistency of care. Specifically, the annual volatility in key performance measures is 1.9 percentage points lower among the member hospitals of winning health systems than it is among peer group health system members. This variance is statistically significant over a five-year period, IBM Watson Health said it announcing its findings.

“Intuitively, many health-care professionals have believed for years that individual hospital alignment is a key to health system success, but alignment has been difficult to quantify. Put simply, we wanted to determine how well health systems are achieving the goal of delivering a consistent patient experience in each of their facilities and start benchmarking that performance each year,” said Jean Chenoweth, senior program director for IBM Watson Health. “Based on our data, it is clear that better hospital alignment does indeed play a role in overall health system performance, and it is something we will be investigating further.”

Hospital systems identified in the research showed:

  • 14.6 percent fewer in-hospital deaths.
  • 17.3 percent fewer complications and 16.2 percent fewer infections.
  • Nearly one-half day shorter stays.
  • Emergency wait times 40 minutes shorter at the median.
  • Spending in-hospital and post-discharge 5.6 percent lower.
  • Patient satisfaction overall 2.3 percent higher.

A total of 338 health systems (2,422 hospitals) were included in the study. Here are the winning health systems, by category:

Large health systems

Mayo Foundation – Rochester, Minn.

Mercy – Chesterfield, Mo.

Sentara Healthcare – Norfolk, Va.

St. Luke’s Health System – Boise, Idaho.

UCHealth – Aurora, Colo.

Medium health systems

Aspirus – Wausau, Wis.

HealthPartners – Bloomington, Minn.

Mercy Health, Cincinnati – Cincinnati, Ohio

Mission Health – Asheville, N.C.

TriHealth – Cincinnati, Ohio

Small health systems

Asante – Medford, Ore.

CHI St. Joseph Health – Bryan, Texas

Maury Regional Health – Columbia, Tenn.

Roper St. Francis Healthcare – Charleston, S.C.

UPMC Susquehanna Health System – Williamsport, Penn.