Highlands-Cashiers Hospital Awarded Performance Leadership Recognition by Chartis Center for Rural Health/iVantage Health in Area of Patient Outcomes

HIGHLANDS-CASHIERS, N.C. (November 20, 2017) – Highlands-Cashiers Hospital, part of Mission Health, earned a 2017 Performance Leader Award in Outcomes from the Chartis Center for Rural Health and iVantage Health Analytics, which tracks rural hospital performance across the country, and informs both the industry and the public about rural healthcare in the United States. Excellent care, abundant access to care, and safety are key to positive outcomes, which are measured by evidence-based metrics such as highly positive patient evaluations, and low rates of readmission, infection, and mortality. The Performance Leadership Award is granted each year on behalf of the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health (NOSORH). Highlands-Cashiers Hospital and Angel Medical Center, also a part of Mission Health, are two of only three western North Carolina hospitals to receive this recognition in the area of Outcomes.

“I am so honored that we have received this award,” said Jacqueline Medland, PhD, RN, President and CNO of Highlands-Cashiers Hospital, “but even more, I feel grateful – for our stellar providers, our deserving patients, Mission Health, and our generous community. We do everything we can to put our patients first, and to mitigate the challenges we face as a rural hospital, which include geographical and patient transport trials and how best to customize care so it meets our communities’ current and future needs.”

The rankings are determined each year using iVantage Health Analytics’ Hospital Strength INDEX®, the industry’s most comprehensive and objective assessment of rural hospital performance. In partnership with NOSORH, iVantage Health Analytics has developed a data-driven program designed to identify excellence across a broad spectrum of indicators relevant to hospital performance and patient care such as risk management, positive outcomes, patient satisfaction, and fiscal management soundness. The tool is the primary measurement scale used to evaluate rural hospital performance for this award, and superior index rankings mean that a hospital is performing patient care safely, effectively, and efficiently.

The Hospital Strength INDEX captures performance metrics for all rural and Critical Access Hospitals. Leveraging data from public data sources, INDEX aggregates data from more than 50 individual metrics into three major categories and eight pillars to derive anoverall strength rating for each facility. The NOSORH also created National Rural Health Day to raise awareness about rural health issues and the challenges rural hospitals and Critical Access Hospitals face, and it is celebrated on the third Thursday of each November. Further, the day exists to recognize the commitment and excellence of rural healthcare providers.

Rural hospitals and Critical Access Hospitals across the nation have closed over the last seven years, despite the need that the country’s 61 million rural residents have for the services they offer. These institutions face special challenges related to provider and staff recruitment and retention, insurance, and their remote locations, among others.

The positive patient outcomes that are a hallmark of Highlands-Cashiers Hospital are the result of extraordinary care teams, conscientiously-coordinated care, and innovations like telemedicine, that grant patients greater access to care. In addition, the importance of consistent positive patient experience feedback, and even something as simple as a healthcare setting environment that has healing features, such as abundant light and soothing sounds like running water, are also determinants to positive patient outcomes.

Compassionate, safe, and efficiently delivered care are what drive the excellent outcomes of the hospitals that receive the Performance Leadership Award. They also create a practical care standard that other hospitals can emulate.


Highlands-Cashiers Hospital (HCH), a member of Mission Health, is a not-for-profit community hospital serving Highlands, Cashiers and the surrounding North Carolina mountain communities. Located on Highway 64 between the two towns, HCH offers diagnostic and acute patient care through on-site professional services or provides a referral to other regional healthcare systems. Emergency care is physician-staffed 24/7. HCH has 24 beds for acute care services, 80 beds in the Eckerd Living Center, a skilled nursing facility, and four hospital-owned physician clinics in Highlands and Cashiers. For more information, please visit hchospital.org.


Mission Health, based in Asheville, North Carolina, is the state’s sixth-largest health system. For the fifth time in the past six years, Mission Health has been named one of the nation’s Top 15 Health Systems by Truven Health Analytics, an IBM Company and part of IBM Watson Health in 2017. We are the only health system in North Carolina to achieve this recognition. Mission Health operates six hospitals, numerous outpatient and surgery centers, post-acute care provider CarePartners, long-term acute care provider Asheville Specialty Hospital, and the region’s only dedicated Level II trauma center. With approximately 12,000 team members and 2,000 volunteers, Mission Health is dedicated to improving the health and wellness of the people of western North Carolina. For more information, please visit mission-health.org or @MissionHealthNC.


The National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health (NOSORH) was established in 1995 to assist State Offices of Rural Health in their efforts to improve access to, and the quality of, health care for America’s 61 million rural citizens. NOSORH enhances the capacity of SORHs to do this by supporting the development of state and community rural health leaders; creating and facilitating state, regional and national partnerships that foster information sharing and spur rural health-related programs/activities; and enhancing access to quality healthcare services in rural communities.

About the Chartis Group
The Chartis Group (Chartis) is a comprehensive advisory and analytics services dedicated to the healthcare industry. Chartis provides strategic planning, value-based care, advanced performance, informatics and technology consulting services as well as leading-edge decision support tools to the country’s leading healthcare providers. The Chartis Center for Rural Health (CCRH) was formed in 2016 to offer tailored services, performance management solutions, research and education to rural hospitals and facilities. Learn more at Chartisrural.com.

About iVantage Health Analytics, a subsidiary of The Chartis Group
A subsidiary of The Chartis Group, iVantage Health Analytics (iVantage) is a leading provider of healthcare analytic and performance management analytic tools. Health system and hospital leadership teams across the country rely on the company’s software and services to deliver customized insights on clinical and financial performance, strategic planning, market assessment and payment optimization. iVantage’s analytics are the basis of continuing thought leadership and insight in the areas of healthcare policy and research.

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