Asante recognized for patient results

Asante Health Systems Chief Executive Officer Roy Vinyard was packing it in for the week last Friday when the phone rang with some good news on the other end.

He learned that his hospital system had been named one of the top 15 groups in the country by the well-known medical researcher Truven Health Analytics.

"It made my Friday afternoon to get this call," Vinyard said. "It is an honor."

Truven Health Analytics publishes its report each year to recognize U.S. hospitals that produce services that lead to shorter hospital stays for patients, fewer medical complications during stays and strong patient satisfaction surveys.

The study relies on public data provided by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. These hospitals are then grouped into three categories: large, medium and small. Five medical systems were recognized in each category.

Asante was rated as one of the top five nationally in the small category, which includes organizations with operating costs of $750 million or less. Asante includes Rogue Regional Medical Center in Medford and Three Rivers Community Hospital in Grants Pass, and its various labs and clinics throughout Southern Oregon and Northern California. Asante is also in the midst of finalizing a deal to bring Ashland Community Hospital into the group.

The recognition is based on data from 300 medical systems, representing 2,200 hospitals across the country. Asante was the only hospital system in the Northwest to earn a top 15 ranking and one of only three in the West, along with one system each in California and Arizona.

Vinyard said the hospital had no contact with Truven Health Analytics during the process.

"We don't know the outcome until they call us if we happen to be one of the top hospitals," he said.

Vinyard credited Asante's nearly 4,000 employes with the good showing in this year's report.

"If it wasn't for them, this would not have been possible," Vinyard said.

Among the achievements that boosted Asante's rating was that it ranked best overall in the study for 30-day re-admission rates for heart attack and heart failure and second overall for re-admission for pneumonia. It also ranked first in its category for fewest complications

Vinyard said he was especially proud of the low re-admission rates, saying it's the organization's goal to keep people out of the hospital as much as possible after treatment.

Asante was compared with 133 other health systems in the smaller system category. Vinyard said even with ACH added to the Asante fold, the system would still rank in the small hospital tier for future studies.

The ranking will surely help with marketing, Vinyard said, but the overall focus is what it means in terms of patient care and outcomes.

"That's what's most important to us," Vinyard said.

Reach reporter Chris Conrad at 541-776-4471 or email

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