Ellis Hospital earns top health grade

Ellis Hospital has been ranked among the top 5 percent of hospitals in the country for clinical excellence for three years in a row. It is the only hospital in New York to receive this title.

Ellis staff, administrators and friends celebrated the award Monday, Jan. 29, with speeches, a cake and free lunch for the hospital's staff.

Health Grades Inc. is a health care ratings, information and advisory services company. Its stated mission is to guide America to better health care.

William North, who works for Health Grades Inc. and is the hospital's adviser, said one out of every 266 hospitals in the country received the honor of clinical excellence. North, pointing to data from previous years, said in 2004, only six New York hospitals received the honor; in 2005, only four; 2006, seven; and in 2007, four. North said not one of those hospitals received the high honor three years in a row.

Interim director Dianne Shugrue said she was excited to receive the award the first year, but to receive it three years in a row was unprecedented and extraordinary.

Shugrue thanked the hospital's staff, many of whom were in the audience.

"Don't think that I take what you do for granted. The contributions you bring to Ellis are special, and that has afforded us this award," she said.

Ellis' medical director David Leibers also expressed awe at the hospital's being ranked among the top 5 percent in the country. He said the hospital's staff has been working so hard, and achieving this award is just an affirmation of that hard work.

Leibers pointed to Ellis' state-of-the-art intensive care unit, the Wright heart center and the new bariatric center as examples of the top-notch facilities at the hospital.

"This hospital invests in quality patient care so we can bring the best quality of care to the community," Leibers said.

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