To the Editor of The Stanford Daily:
The Feb. 17 Stanford Daily headline article on Stanford Health Care is misleading and I am writing to correct the record. By focusing on a single infection rate from 2012 and 2013, rather than overall standards that represent hospital quality, the article presents a distorted picture of one of the nation’s top academic hospitals. Quality and patient safety are our highest priority, and SHC is consistently recognized nationally for the standards we achieve.
The Joint Commission, which accredits over 4,000 U.S. hospitals, gave Stanford Hospital its gold seal of approval in recognition of our high performance standards. In addition to being consistently ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of the nation’s best hospitals, in 2015, SHC was listed on the prestigious honor roll, nationally ranked in 13 specialties and named the top hospital in California.
We support public reporting of quality and safety data, but the data must be current, meaningful and properly risk-adjusted to reflect the complexity of patients receiving care at major teaching hospitals. The public is best served by education on the many factors that contribute to hospital quality and safety, not by misleading headlines.
Raj Behal, MD, MPH
Chief Quality Officer, Stanford Health Care
Clinical Professor of Medicine, and Associate Dean for Quality
Stanford University School of Medicine