North Shore Medical Center Safety Report
North Shore Medical Center is a non-profit general medical and surgical hospital offering adult and pediatric care. It provides range of medical services, including specialities such as: cancer, diabetes & endocrinology, ear, nose & throat, geriatrics, gynecology, and urology, among others. In addition North Shore is a Stroke Center.
The facility has 357 beds, making it a mid-sized hospital in the Miami area.
In the most recent survey year, the hospital’s emergency room saw 48,361 patients and had a total 12,603 admissions. Hospital doctors performed 2,065 in-patient surgeries and 1,768 outpatient surgeries.
General Safety and Ranking – 34/100
North Shore Medical Center received a score of 34/100 from Consumer Safety Reports. This score is below the average for national hospital scores (44.5). The Consumer Reports scores is based upon the hospital’s ability to:
- avoid infection
- avoid readmission
- communicate about medication and discharge
- appropriately use chest and abdominal scanning and
- avoid mortality.
North Shore Medical Center did not receive a numerical score from U.S. News & World reports, but the publication did note several adult speciality departments, including:
- diabetes and endocrinology
- ear, nose & throat
- gastroenterology & GI surgery
- neurology and neurosurgery
Above Average Ratings – General
According to Consumer Reports, North Shore Medical Center ranked above average for appropriate use of chest scanning. This means that it had a low percentage of “double scans.” Double scans occur when patients receive two kinds of imaging tests consecutively: one without dye and the other with dye. This needlessly increases a patient’s exposure to radiation.
The hospital also ranked above average for “avoiding adverse events.” Adverse events are defined by Consumer Reports as a measure based on mortality or a longer-than-expected hospital stays. The rates are compared with predicted averages based on the kinds of patients the hospital cares for and the types of surgeries it performs.
In this category, North Shore Medical Center had 63% fewer adverse events than predicted based on nearly 100 surgical procedures. In particular, it had 37% fewer adverse events in coronary angioplasty surgeries than predicted.
Above Average Specialties Ratings
As indicated above, North Shore Medical Center has several specialities, according to US News & World Report. The hospital did not receive above average ratings in any specialty category except for that of “Patient Volume.”
The Patient Volume category reflects the number of high-risk Medicare inpatients in 2010, 2011 and 2012 in key specialty-related procedures and diagnoses. The specialties that had high patient volume included diabetes & endocrinology, gastroenterology & GI surgery, geriatrics, nephrology and neurology & neurosurgery.
Neutral General Practice Ratings
North Shore Medical Center received neutral ratings by Consumer Reports for “avoiding death – surgical. This category rates how often patients undergoing surgery died in the hospital after developing a serious, treatable complication. Such complications may include pneumonia, deep vein thrombosis/pulmonary embolism, sepsis, shock/cardiac arrest or gastrointestinal hemorrhage/acute ulcer. Conditions such as these should be identified quickly and treated.
The hospital also received a neutral rating for “avoiding death – medical.” This category is based on the probability that a heart failure, heart attack or pneumonia patient will die within 30 days of being admitted to the hospital.
It also scored neutrally for “appropriate use of abdominal scans.” This means that it had an average percentage of “double scans.” Double scans occur when patients receive two kinds of imaging tests consecutively: one without dye and the other with dye. This needlessly increases a patient’s exposure to radiation.
Neutral Specialties Practice Ratings
This hospital scored moderately across several of its specialties for:
This rates the hospital’s success in preventing different common types of in-house accidents and errors, including preventing pressure ulcers, post-surgical inpatient deaths from treatable complications, and post-surgical hip fractures.
This rates the likelihood of survival 30 days after admission, adjusted for severity and other risks. A moderate score indicates that survival rates are “as expected.”
All specialties received moderate scores for patient safety. The specialties that received moderate scores for survival rates included: cancer, diabetes & endocrinology, gynecology, neurology & neurosurgery, and urology.
Below Average or Poor General Ratings
Consumer Reports gave North Shore Medical Center overall poor scores for “avoiding infections.” This hospital reported 23 bloodstream infections among ICU patients had central lines between 4/01/2012 and 3/31/2013. This figure is 86% worse than national scores.
The hospital also reported 26 catheter-associated urinary tract infections among ICU patients that had catheters between 4/01/2012 and 3/31/2013. This number is 143% worse than national scores.
However, the hospital scored excellently with respect to surgical-site infections, reporting zero of such infections for the period between 4/01/2012 and 3/31/2013.
The hospital also scored below average with respect to readmission rates. Medicare patients have a 17% chance of being readmitted to the hospital within 30 days of discharge.
Below Average or Poor Specialties Ratings
North Shore Medical Center scored poorly across several specialities with respect to:
The specialties with poor survival rate scores included: ear, nose & throat, gastroenterology & GI surgery, geriatrics, nephrology, orthopedics and pulmonology.
All specialties scored low marks for having advanced technology such as diagnostic radioisotope services, image-guided radiation therapy, PET/CT scanner and robotic surgery.
All specialties received poor marks for their patient programs such as hospice, pain management, rehabilitation and palliative care.
The hospital has 474 full-time nurses. The relative balance of nurses to patients is low across all noted specialties.
Consumer Reports found that North Shore Medical Center earned an average rating for patient satisfaction, meaning that overall patients were moderately satisfied with the quality of care they received. Of the patients surveyed:
- 90% said the doctors always or usually communicated well (above average).
- 85 % said the nurse always or usually communicated well (neutral).
- 83% said their pain was controlled or managed well (below average).
- 79% said their room and bathrooms were always or usually clean (poor).
The hospital received poor ratings for communication upon being discharge from the hospital or being introduced to new drugs. In particular:
- 74% of patients said they received information about what symptoms and signs to watch for after leaving the hospital.
- 69% of patients said the doctors or nurses always or usually explained about new medication.
The U.S. News & World Report found that 57% of patients would recommend the North Shore Medical Center to family and friends. This percentage is well below both the state average for hospital recommendations (68%) and the national average (71%). Fourteen percent of patients surveyed said they would probably or definitely not recommend the hospital to others. This percentage is above the state average (8%) and as well as the national average (5%).
If you or a loved one sustained further injury or illness after visiting the doctors and physicians at North Shore Medical Center you may have a claim for medical malpractice. Contact our attorneys today to discuss your case and the possibility of taking steps to receive compensation for your injuries.