Celebrating Successes

Stony Brook Medicine Named One of America’s 100 Best Hospitals™

May 1 was a proud day for Stony Brook Medicine as faculty and staff gathered to celebrate their successes in a milestone achievement: recognition as one of America’s 100 Best Hospitals™ for 2019 by Healthgrades.

In addition, Stony Brook was recognized by Healthgrades as one of America’s 100 Best Hospitals in 2019 for:

  • Cardiac care
  • Coronary intervention
  • Stroke care

Only two hospitals in the nation received the America’s 100 Best Hospitals Award, 100 Best Cardiac Care Award, 100 Best Coronary Intervention Award and 100 Best Stroke Care Award from Healthgrades in 2019. Stony Brook University Hospital was the only hospital in New York State and the entire Northeast region to earn all these distinctions.

A Team Effort

In addressing the audience, Stony Brook University President Samuel L. Stanley Jr., MD, noted what a remarkable achievement this recognition is for Stony Brook Medicine and a tremendous benefit to patients.

“I would like to thank all of our outstanding clinicians, researchers and patient caregivers, both the front-line staff and the staff who support them, for making this achievement possible,” he said. “Healthcare takes a total team effort, and today is truly a celebration of your teamwork, your dedication and your commitment to caring for our patients.”

As one of America’s 100 Best Hospitals, Stony Brook University Hospital is among the top 2 percent of hospitals nationwide. Stony Brook is the only hospital on Long Island to achieve this distinction, and one of only four hospitals in New York State named among America’s 100 Best Hospitals this year.

“To use an academic metaphor, being in the Top 100, or top 2 percent nationwide, is the equivalent to receiving a 98 on your final exam in college or in medical school,” said Kenneth Kaushansky, MD, Senior Vice President, Health Sciences and Dean, Renaissance School of Medicine at Stony Brook University. “Put another way, it’s the equivalent of earning an A+ for our ‘health grades’ — which means outstanding quality care for our patients. Moreover, having accomplished this in the setting of an extremely busy, teaching hospital is all the more rare for Top 100 hospitals. I am just so proud of our entire healthcare team.”

In accepting the America’s 100 Best Hospital award, Ernest J. Baptiste, Stony Brook University Hospital CEO, said, “Our mission of delivering high-quality healthcare is at the core of everything we do for our patients. This recognition pays tribute to the dedication and commitment of our staff in fulfilling that mission.”

Determining America’s Best Hospitals

To decide America’s Best Hospitals, Healthgrades, the first organization in the country to rate hospitals based on actual outcomes, analyzed more than 4,500 hospitals nationwide to examine in-hospital complication rates and mortality rates.

Recipients of the Healthgrades America’s 100 Best Hospitals Award stand out among the rest for overall clinical excellence across a broad spectrum of care. During the 2015-2017 period for which these awards were bestowed, these hospitals showed superior performance in clinical outcomes for patients in the Medicare population across 21 of 32 most common inpatient conditions and procedures.

If all hospitals, as a group, performed similarly to hospitals achieving the Healthgrades 2019 America’s 100 Best Hospitals Award, on average about 173,000 lives could potentially have been saved.

Patients treated at hospitals in the top 2 percent have, on average, a 25.2 percent lower risk of dying. When being treated for specific health conditions, patients at these hospitals had a:

  • 21.7 percent lower risk of dying from a heart attack
  • 24.8 percent lower risk of dying from a stroke
  • 29.2 percent lower risk of dying from heart failure
  • 23.7 percent lower risk of dying from sepsis

Sustained Excellence and Care

Prior to reaching the top 100, Stony Brook was named one of America’s 250 Best Hospitals for five consecutive years, dating back to 2015 — which equates to the top 5 percent nationwide. Stony Brook was also named one of America’s 100 Best Hospitals for cardiac care during that same span of time. And, for the past four years, Stony Brook has been one of America’s 100 Best Hospitals for coronary intervention and stroke care.

“Stony Brook’s track record over the past five years means that clinical excellence has been a sustained way of caring for patients at Stony Brook Medicine,” said President Stanley. “These awards are merely the byproducts of our faculty and staff’s dedication and commitment to providing high-quality care.”

Outstanding Cardiac Care

To be considered as America’s 100 Best for Cardiac Care, a hospital must be evaluated in four of five procedures (coronary artery bypass graft surgery, coronary interventional procedures, heart attack, heart failure and valve surgery). The performance for in-hospital mortality and 30-day mortality are used in the calculation, with 30-day mortality receiving 60 percent of the weight and in-hospital mortality receiving 40 percent of the weight.

The award for America’s 100 Best in Coronary Intervention is based solely on the performance in percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), averaging in-hospital mortality and in-hospital +30-day mortality. The weighting is also 60 percent for in-hospital +30 day mortality and 40 percent for in-hospital mortality.

“This recognition, coupled with the Heart Institute’s recent ratings from the Society of Thoracic Surgery and Hospital Compare, lets patients know that when you come to Stony Brook Heart Institute, you can depend on quality and expertise for every aspect of your cardiac care — care that exceeds national outcomes,” said Henry Tannous, MD, Chief, Cardiothoracic Surgery and Co-Director, Stony Brook University Heart Institute.
“Whether you are looking to improve your heart health, prevent the progression of cardiovascular disease or have an urgent cardiac need, our renowned team of heart experts is here to help — we are not only on the forefront for bringing lifesaving care to people with heart problems but we remain focused on restoring a patient’s quality of life,” said Hal Skopicki, MD, PhD, Chief, Cardiology and Co-Director, Stony Brook University Heart Institute. “And patients can have peace of mind knowing that we are among the top-rated facilities in the nation.”

Stroke Care that Excels

The award for America’s 100 Best in Stroke Care is based on one condition: stroke. To be evaluated, a hospital must have a transfer-out rate of less than 10 percent for the three years of data used. The data includes in-hospital mortality and in-hospital +30-day mortality, using the same 60/40 percentage weighing as is used in determining the cardiac care and coronary intervention awards.

“We’ve come so far over the past two years — earning the highest designation possible as Suffolk County’s first Comprehensive Stroke Center, launching Suffolk County’s only Mobile Stroke Unit Program to directly provide emergency stroke care to patients in the community, and seeing stroke awareness grow exponentially through our community and EMS outreach programs,” said David Fiorella, MD, PhD, neurointerventional radiologist and Director, Stony Brook Cerebrovascular Center. “We are optimistic that these programs will allow us to achieve the best possible outcomes for stroke patients in Suffolk County.”

“In the 23 years I’ve been at Stony Brook, I’ve watched our stroke unit grow from a single room with one nurse to one of the most advanced stroke ICRs (stroke intensive care room) in the country, and that wouldn’t have been possible without the help of our excellent nursing staff, administrators, stroke coordinators and the tireless work of our physician extenders,” said Michael Guido, III, MD, neurologist and Director, Stony Brook Neurology Stroke Program.