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  • Avera McKennan Recognized by Healthgrades for Quality Clinical Outcomes

Published on October 22, 2013

Avera McKennan Recognized by Healthgrades for Quality Clinical Outcomes

New National Report Identifies Avera McKennan Among the Top Hospitals Nationally for Excellence in Orthopedics, Neuroscience, Gastrointestinal and Critical Care


SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Oct. 22, 2013) –  Avera McKennan Hospital & University Health Center today announced that it has been recognized by Healthgrades for clinical excellence in the medical specialties of orthopedics, neuroscience, gastrointestinal and critical care. This achievement was released today in American Hospital Quality Outcomes 2014: Healthgrades Report to the Nation, which evaluates hospital performance at more than 4,500 hospitals nationwide for 31 of the most common inpatient procedures and conditions.

Avera McKennan has also received other major national quality accolades, including being named one of the nation’s 100 Top Hospitals® by Truven Health Analytics, and the number one hospital in South Dakota by U.S. News & World Report for two years in a row. 

“Clinical excellence has long been a top priority at Avera McKennan. We’re proud to be recognized for our high level of performance across a number of medical specialties,” said Dr. Dave Kapaska, Regional President and CEO at Avera McKennan. “These five-star awards are important validation that we always strive to provide the highest quality care.”

Avera McKennan’s full listing of 2014 Healthgrades achievements include:


  • Five-Star Recipient for Spinal Fusion Surgery in 2014


  • Five-Star Recipient for Treatment of Stroke for three years in a row (2012-2014)


  • Five-Star Recipient for Treatment of GI Bleed for three years in a row (2012-2014)
  • Five-Star Recipient for Treatment of Bowel Obstruction for six years in a row (2009-2014)

Critical Care:

  • Five-Star Recipient for Treatment of Pulmonary Embolism in 2014
  • Five-Star Recipient for Treatment of Respiratory Failure for three years in a row (2012-2014)

The Healthgrades report highlights the disparity in hospital performance for specific conditions and procedures and the impact that this variation may have on health outcomes. For example, from 2010-2012, if all hospitals as a group performed similarly to hospitals receiving five stars as a group, on average 234,252 lives could potentially have been saved and 157,418 complications could potentially have been avoided.  A five-star rating indicates that Avera McKennan’s clinical outcomes are better than expected when treating the condition or conducting the procedure being evaluated.

“As American policy-makers focus more intently on ways to lower health care costs and improve quality, patients are being asked to assume more responsibility for their health care decisions – from selection of their health plan to the associated network of physicians and hospitals,” said Evan Marks, EVP, Strategy and Informatics, Healthgrades. “Since all hospitals do not perform equally in all procedures, patients can have confidence that by selecting a physician associated with a hospital that has achieved recognition by Healthgrades, they can potentially improve outcomes and reduce costs.”

For its analysis, Healthgrades evaluated approximately 40 million Medicare-patient records for nearly 4,500 short-term acute care hospitals nationwide, assessing hospital performance relative to each of 31 common conditions and procedures. Detailed performance information may be found at