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UAB is named top 50 cardiovascular hospital

UAB’s hospital in Birmingham was recently named one of the top fifty hospitals in the country for cardiovascular conditions by IBM Watson Health.

This study was part of the IBM Watson Health 100 Top Hospitals® program, which uses independent and objective research to analyze hospital and health system performance in key clinical and operational areas for selected cardiovascular procedures and medical care.

The indicators include risk-adjusted inpatient mortality index, risk-adjusted complications index, mean 30-day risk-adjusted mortality rate, mean 30-day risk-adjusted readmission rate, severity-adjusted length of stay, case mix- and wage-adjusted inpatient cost per case, 30-day episode payment, and adjusted operating profit margin.

The study has been conducted annually since 1998.

Dr. James Davies, M.D. is the director of the UAB Cardiovascular Institute and division director of Cardiothoracic Surgery.

“It is a tremendous honor to be named a Top 50 Cardiovascular Hospital by IBM Watson Health,” said Director Davies. “UAB’s nationally ranked cardiovascular services offer the full spectrum of cardiovascular care. Our goal is to ensure that patients obtain the best treatment possible with the most state-of-the-art technology available.”

Economic developer Dr. Nicole Jones told the Alabama Political Reporter, “Quality of life and addressing the needs of human capital are factors in companies’ decisions on where to locate or relocate. Access to quality health care for employees and their families is therefore frequently mentioned as a priority during the site selection process. UAB certainly continues to meet the medical needs for residents in central Alabama, especially in the area of heart health. Congratulations, UAB, on this stellar achievement.”

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Based on the results of this year’s study, IBM Watson Health extrapolated that, if all Medicare inpatients received the same level of care as those treated in the award-winning facilities more than 11,000 additional lives could be saved. More than 2,800 additional heart patients could also be complication-free; and over $1.5 billion could be saved along with heart patients living longer more productive lives.

Ekta Punwani is the 100 Top Hospitals® program leader at IBM Watson Health.

“By finding ways to continuously improve and innovate, the winners of our 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals study are identifying opportunities to deliver health care value to patients, communities and payers,” said Punwani. “The top-performing hospitals demonstrated better clinical care and were more efficient than their peers at delivering this care.”

About 610,000 people die of heart disease in the United States every year. That is 1 in every 4 deaths. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women.

The winning hospitals were announced Nov. 19.


Brandon Moseley is a former reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter.

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