Hackensack University Medical Center Recognized by Healthgrades for Outstanding Patient Experience

Hackensack University Medical Center Recognized by Healthgrades for Outstanding Patient Experience

Top priority is to deliver the best health care experience, exceeding patient expectations

Hackensack Meridian Health Hackensack University Medical Center is pleased to announce it has achieved Healthgrades’ 2018 Outstanding Patient Experience Award. This distinction places Hackensack University Medical Center among the top 15 percent of hospitals nationwide, according to Healthgrades, the leading online resource for comprehensive information about physicians and hospitals.

“We are so proud of our team members for their tireless commitment to deliver high-quality, patient-centered care. At Hackensack University Medical Center, our top priority is to deliver an outstanding health care experience,” said Ihor S. Sawczuk, M.D., FACS, president of Hackensack University Medical Center.

Healthgrades evaluated 3,478 hospitals that submitted at least 100 patient experience surveys to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), covering admissions from April 2016 to March 2017 to identify hospital performance in this area.

Healthgrades evaluated hospital performance by applying a scoring methodology to 10 patient experience measures, using data collected from a 32-question patient experience survey of the hospital’s own patients. The survey questions focus on patients’ perspectives of their care in the hospital. The topics of these questions ranged from cleanliness and noise levels in patient rooms to factors such as pain management and responsiveness to patients’ needs. The measures also include whether a patient would recommend the hospital to friends or family.

In order to be recognized by Healthgrades, hospitals must meet eligibility requirements for consideration, which includes clinical performance thresholds in addition to a minimum of 100 survey responses. Nationally, almost 3,000 hospitals met those requirements with 439 hospitals outperforming their peers—based on their patients’ responses—to achieve this distinction. Hackensack University Medical Center’s performance places it among the top 10 percent in the nation.

“Patient experience surveys offer important insights about hospitals and their commitment to providing patients with outstanding experience, and furthermore, consumers value that information when making care decisions,” said Brad Bowman, M.D., chief medical officer, Healthgrades. “Hospitals that have received the Healthgrades 2018 Outstanding Patient Experience Award have received high marks from their most important stakeholders—the patients themselves.”

Hackensack University Medical Center’s Office of Patient Experience has aggressively implemented new systems and protocols to create a culture of excellence and restore the human connection in health care. The hospital recently transitioned to NRC Health’s Real-time feedback platform, which allows team members to act on information, address patient improvements, and promote customer loyalty.   The patient experience team works seamlessly with leadership and frontline staff to address patient needs in real-time. The hospital’s team-based approach ensures that every team member, from the executive leadership, care and support teams, is focused on providing patients and their families a human experience. From leadership rounding to small acts of kindness, the medical center is creating a well-orchestrated experience.

“The Healthgrades award reaffirms the great work that our team members do every day to ensure we are not just managing patient expectations, but rather we are exceeding their expectations,” said Dr. Ramonita Jimenez, DNP, MPA, RN, NE-BC, administrator, Department of Patient Care. “Our mission is to connect with patients and their families, ensuring that every moment along a patient’s care journey delivers the same high standard of care.”

The culture of excellence is introduced to every team leader and member during the onboarding process, and continues throughout their work experience. The Office of Patient Experience has designed an infrastructure that includes coaching and validation along with one on one support. Skills labs, which reinforce “must have” behaviors that focus on engagement and connection with patients and family members, ensure team members have the tools they need to successfully deliver an outstanding patient experience.

“Whether it involves clear communication or even just a smile, we’re hard at work ensuring our patients experience a well-orchestrated visit,” added Judy Miranda, DNP, RN, director of Patient Experience, interim director of Oncology, Inpatient.

At the network level, Hackensack Meridian Health has created an Evidence-Based Research, Coaching, and Innovation team that drives the organization’s patient-centered approach to care. The Innovation team is focused on supporting team members, as well as incorporating patients in their decision-making process. Hackensack Meridian created an Experience & Innovation Café, which is a venue for team members, physicians, senior leaders, and executives to come together to help redesign how they deliver care.  In addition, they recently launched the Hackensack Meridian Health Design Labs which allows team members to have a hand in re-configuring new systems and protocols prior to their system-wide deployment.

“We’re constantly pushing ourselves and asking the questions, Are we giving our patients high-quality care? and Are we giving them the best experience possible?” said Elizabeth Paskas, vice president, Experience Innovation & Consumer Services, Hackensack Meridian Health.

In addition to the Healthgrades’ 2018 Outstanding Patient Experience Award, Hackensack University Medical Center has also been recognized by Healthgrades for three Clinical Quality Awards in the last 12 months including Stroke Care Excellence Award™, Cranial Neurosurgery Excellence Award™ and Labor and Delivery Excellence Award™.

View Healthgrades hospital quality methodologies. Access the recently released Patient Sentiment Report from Healthgrades and MGMA to read what patients say about their physicians.

About Hackensack Meridian Health Hackensack University Medical Center
Hackensack Meridian Health Hackensack University Medical Center, a 781-bed nonprofit teaching and research hospital located in Bergen County, NJ, is the largest provider of inpatient and outpatient services in the state. Founded in 1888 as the county’s first hospital, it is now part of one of the largest networks in the state comprised of 33,000 team members and more than 6,500 physicians. Hackensack University Medical Center was listed as the number one hospital in New Jersey in U.S. News & World Report’s 2017-18 Best Hospital rankings – maintaining its place atop the NJ rankings since the rating system was introduced. It was also named one of the top four New York Metro Area hospitals. Hackensack University Medical Center is one of only five major academic medical centers in the nation to receive Healthgrades America’s 50 Best Hospitals Award for five or more years in a row. Becker’s Hospital Review recognized Hackensack University Medical Center as one of the 100 Great Hospitals in America 2018. The medical center is one of the top 25 green hospitals in the country according to Practice Greenhealth, and received 25 Gold Seals of Approval™ by The Joint Commission – more than any other hospital in the country. It was the first hospital in New Jersey and second in the nation to become a Magnet® recognized hospital for nursing excellence; receiving its fifth consecutive designation in 2014. Hackensack University Medical Center has created an entire campus of award-winning care, including: the John Theurer Cancer Center; the Heart & Vascular Hospital; and the Sarkis and Siran Gabrellian Women’s and Children’s Pavilion, which houses the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital and Donna A. Sanzari Women’s Hospital, which was designed with The Deirdre Imus Environmental Health Center and listed on the Green Guide’s list of Top 10 Green Hospitals in the U.S. Hackensack University Medical Center is the Hometown Hospital of the New York Giants and the New York Red Bulls and is Official Medical Services Provider to The Northern Trust PGA Golf Tournament. It remains committed to its community through fundraising and community events especially the Tackle Kids Cancer Campaign providing much needed research at the Children’s Cancer Institute housed at the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital. To learn more, visit