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Media Contact:
Laura Blodgett, Media Relations
Saint Joseph Mercy Health System
734-712-4536
blodgetl@trinity-health.org

Title
Four Saint Joseph Mercy Health System hospitals receive Blue Distinction Center Designation
Start Date
03/06/2013
Article
Four Saint Joseph Mercy Health System hospitals receive Blue Distinction Center Designation from Blue Cross Blue Shield
The Blue Distinction® Designation aids consumers and employers in choosing high- performing hospitals

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – (March 6, 2013) – Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan has named four Saint Joseph Mercy Health System hospitals –including Chelsea Community Hospital, St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor, St. Mary Mercy Livonia and St. Joseph Mercy Oakland- as a Blue Distinction Center and Blue Distinction Center + in the areas of Spine Surgery and Knee and Hip Replacement. The Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care® program is a national designation awarded by Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies to medical facilities that have demonstrated expertise in delivering quality specialty care – and recently has been expanded to include more robust quality measures focused on improved patient health and safety as well as new cost-efficiency measures.

Blue Distinction Center for Knee/Hip Services: Chelsea Community Hospital
Blue Distinction Center + for Spine Surgery: St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor
St. Joseph Mercy Oakland
Blue Distinction Center + for Knee/Hip Transplants: St. Mary Mercy Livonia
St. Joseph Mercy Oakland

Since 2006, consumers, medical providers and employers have relied on the Blue Distinction program to identify hospitals delivering quality care in Bariatric Surgery, Cardiac Care, Complex and Rare Cancers, Knee and Hip Replacements, Spine Surgery and Transplants. The selection criteria used to evaluate facilities were developed with input from the medical community and include general quality and safety metrics as well as program specific metrics.

“We are pleased to have met the rigorous selection criteria that have been set by the Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care program,” said Garry C. Faja, Regional President and CEO, Saint Joseph Mercy Health System. “This designation underscores the high level of orthopedic services that we provide communities across southeastern Michigan.”

“Congratulations to Saint Joseph Mercy Health System on earning the Blue Distinction and Blue Distinction + designations for Hip and Knee Replacement and Spine Surgery. This designation, and the hospitals’ participation in initiatives that improve quality and safety in these areas, demonstrate a focus on continuous improvement yielding safer patient care,” says David Share, MD, senior vice president, Value Partnerships, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan.

Research confirms that the newly designated Blue Distinction Centers and Blue Distinction Centers+ demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients, with lower rates of complications and readmissions than their peers. Blue Distinction Centers+ also are more than 20 percent more cost-efficient. The program provides consumers with tools to make better informed healthcare decisions, and these results will enable employers, working with their local Blue Plan, to tailor benefits to meet their individual quality and cost objectives.

About Saint Joseph Mercy Health System
Saint Joseph Mercy Health System (SJMHS) is a health care organization serving six counties in southeast Michigan including Livingston, Macomb, Oakland, St. Clair, Washtenaw and Wayne. It includes 537-bed St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor, 443-bed St. Joseph Mercy Oakland in Pontiac, 304-bed St. Mary Mercy Livonia, 136-bed St. Joseph Mercy Livingston in Howell, 119-bed St. Joseph Mercy Port Huron and 113-bed Chelsea Community Hospital. Combined, the six hospitals are licensed for 1,726 beds, have six outpatient health centers, four urgent care facilities, more than 25 specialty centers; employ more than 14,000 individuals and have a medical staff of nearly 2,700 physicians.

A member of Trinity Health, the nation’s fourth largest Catholic health care organization, SJMHS is committed improving the health of its communities by reinvesting its profits back into the community through new technologies, vital health services, and access for all. The hospitals of SJMHS provide approximately $100 million in community benefit to the communities it serves each year.

For more information on health services offered at Saint Joseph Mercy Health System, please visit www.stjoeshealth.org.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network are nonprofit corporations and independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. For more company information, visit bcbsm.com.

Blue Distinction® Centers met overall quality measures for patient safety and outcomes, developed with input from the medical community. Blue Distinction® Centers+ also met cost measures that address consumers’ need for affordable healthcare. Individual outcomes may vary. National criteria is displayed on www.bcbs.com. A Local Blue Plan may require additional criteria for facilities located in its own service area. To find out which services and providers (including hospital based physicians) are covered under your policy, or to learn about Local Blue Plan Criteria, contact your Local Blue Plan; and contact your provider before making an appointment to verify its current Network and Blue Distinction Centers status. Each hospital’s Cost Index is calculated separately, based on data from its Local Blue Plan. Hospitals in portions of CA, ID, NY, PA, and WA may lie in areas served by two Local Blue Plans, resulting in two Cost Index figures; and their own Local Blue Plans decide whether all hospitals in these areas must meet Blue Distinction Centers+ national criteria for one or both Cost Index figures. Neither Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association nor any Blue Plans are responsible for damages, losses, or non-covered charges resulting from Blue Distinction or other provider finder information or care received from Blue Distinction or other providers. To find out more, contact your Local Blue Plan.

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