Marcus Daly Memorial Hospital is a 2016 Top 100 Critical Access Hospital.
The announcement came from iVantage Health Analytics, Inc. at the National Rural Health Association’s 39th annual Rural Health Conference in early May.
Marcus Daly Board Chair Don Lodmell, said the award is quite an honor.
“There are 2,078 rural hospitals in the United States. Out of those, 1,284 are critical access hospitals and to be awarded one of the 100 best hospitals in the United States for quality is a very big honor for Marcus Daly,” Lodmell said. “In these rapidly changing times for healthcare, Marcus Daly Memorial Hospital continues to function as a financially sound, nonprofit and independent critical access hospital.”
Lodmell said iVantage ranks hospitals by looking at their quality and outcomes, patient and safety satisfaction and cost and charges.
“This means that John Bartos is running a spot-on hospital,” he said. “This is a very, very strong hospital that is not standing still. We continue to add new facilities, new equipment and are definitely moving forward every year.”
Compared to other critical access hospitals, Marcus Daly offers more services such as the emergency department, ICU, orthopedic surgeons, neurosurgeons, obstetrics and gynecology, a hospitalist team and an educational series driven by community suggestions, he said.
“John Bartos is a visionary who has pushed the hospital forward for 26 years,” Lodmell said. “This gentleman can see change coming two to three years before it happens and when it happens, he’s already brought what he thinks is going to happen to the board and the board acts on it. He sees where hospital medicine is going and what we need to do to keep this hospital number one. For example, we were the first hospital in Montana to have electronic records.”
CEO Bartos thanked all hospital employees.
“I realize this award is only possible because of the hard work and commitment of all Marcus Daly Memorial Hospital employees, physicians and board members,” Bartos said. “It is your commitment to provide quality, accessible, personalized healthcare to the residents of the Bitterroot Valley and surrounding areas that has made this award possible.”
Lodmell said the hospital’s outreach to south Bitterroot Valley, with the opening of the clinic in Darby, matches the mission statement.
“This accessibility will be great for the southern part of the valley,” Lodmell said. “Personalized quality care, locally, is what we’re all about.”
Dr. Jennifer Feighner said the hospital is proud to provide “extremely high quality care.”
“One of the great joys that I have about working at this hospital is that we provide high quality care in a really personalized environment,” Feighner said. “That’s my favorite thing about working here. I’m proud of our medical staff, our nursing staff, the house keepers, maintenance workers, kitchen staff; everybody contributes to the high quality and personalized care that we provide to our patients.”
Feighner said meeting national measures are a daily priority.
“When I took over as director of the hospitalists about six and a half years ago, I made meeting quality measures a priority,” she said. “Meeting national standards for stroke, heart attack, congestive heart failure, pneumonia and prevention of blood clots in the hospital are our priority. Absolutely we do those every day, every patient, every time for each person that comes through our door. It is a great feeling to take such wonderful care of our patients.”
Feigner said being selected Top 100 does not change the hospital’s day-to-day work.
“It is a great pride that we have been accepted as a Top 100 Critical Access Hospital but as Mr. B says ‘we’ve been there,’” Feighner said. “We’ve been providing great care for patients all along.”
Marcus Daly Memorial Hospital received the Top 100 award in 2013. They have been awarded the Mountain Pacific Health Commitment to quality award every year since 2008. This year their EMS earned State of Montana EMS Provider of the Year.
“Our patients are our friends and neighbors. We are very cognizant of that and they know we are going to take good care of them,” Lodmell said. “We’re very thankful to the community and their continued support of the hospital. It shows they believe in us.”
Other Montana hospitals that received the Top 100 award are Barrett Memorial Hospital in Dillon, Central Montana Medical Center in Lewistown, Mountain View Medical Center in White Sulphur Springs and Livingston Healthcare.