Mission Hospital Named One of the Nation’s 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals By IBM Watson Health For Twelfth Time

ASHEVILLE, N.C. (November 10, 2017) – Mission Hospital has been recognized, for a remarkable twelfth time, as one of the nation’s Top 50 Cardiovascular Hospitals for 2018 by the respected IBM Watson Health (previously known as Truven Health Analytics), a leader in assessing clinical quality and value-based care.

A wide range of objective data focusing on patient outcomes, institutional efficiency, and fiscal management, is used to determine which hospitals are chosen for inclusion on the annual best list. Mission Hospital is the only hospital in western North Carolina to earn a ranking on the list. Hospitals that receive Top 50 recognition are those institutions providing patients with the most rapid access to emergency care and that perform high numbers of open heart surgeries and successful cardiac catheterizations and interventional cardiovascular procedures such as angioplasties and stent insertions.

Specifically, the 2018 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals demonstrated:

  • Significantly higher inpatient survival than non-winning cardiovascular hospitals (21% to 47% higher)
  • Fewer patients with complications (18% to 20% fewer)
  • Higher 30-day survival rates for acute myocardial infarction (AMI) and heart failure (HF), and coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) patients (0.3 to 0.9 percentage points higher)
  • Lower readmission rates for AMI, HF, and CABG patients (0.6 to 0.9 percentage points lower)
  • Average lengths of stay for CABG patients that were one day lower than non-winners and 0.3 to 0.5 days lower for AMI, HF and percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) patients
  • $1,333 to $5,745 less in total costs per patient case

And if every hospital in the nation performed at the winner’s level of performance:

  • More than 8,900 additional lives could be saved
  • Nearly 3,700 more heart patients could be complication-free
  • More than $1.4 billion could be saved

Mission Hospital performed not only within the Top 50 Cardiovascular Hospital category, but among the very best on the list.  Mission Hospital’s cardiovascular care statistics reflect not only excellence in the care provided, but an overwhelming superiority in care coordination – one of the most impactful aspects of patient outcomes. During the last year, Mission Hospital performed over 5,000 diagnostic cardiac catheterizations, 2,100 interventional procedures, and 1,500 cardiac surgeries. In addition, nearly 2,400 electrophysiology procedures were performed; those are diagnostic tests or interventions which examine the heart’s electrical activity and help to diagnose and repair irregular heart rhythms or arrhythmia. The hospital’s cardiac clinical team consists of 42 cardiologists and five cardiac surgeons.

Only a few hospitals across the nation provide a level of cardiovascular care that is comparable to Mission Hospital’s, and its performance is unmatched regionally. The speed at which Mission Hospital provides care is also exceptional: The average Mission Hospital heart attack patient has their closed artery reopened within 47 minutes, on average; this places the hospital in the top 10% nationally, as it pertains to a 90-minute national benchmark expectation.

IBM Watson conducts this annual study objectively and uses data that is quantitatively gathered to weigh each hospital’s clinical, operational, and financial performance. The fact that it is an objective study means that hospitals neither apply for recognition nor can they pay to market this honor.

“Ever-improving outcomes, increased efficiency, and fiscal accountability are what we strive for, always,” said Jill Hoggard Green, Ph.D., RN, COO, Mission Health and President, Mission Hospital. “This award represents the important synergistic alignment that’s required to deliver the excellent care we aim to provide to every resident of western North Carolina: It must be compassionately delivered, rapidly accessed, and based on best practices; anything less simply wouldn’t suffice. We are delighted to be recognized again by IBM Watson Health for 2018.”

“Mission Hospital has provided among the nation’s very best cardiac care for many years,” said William D. Kuehl, MD, Chief of Cardiology, Mission Health.  “The clinical team here is spectacular – we have some of the very best cardiologists and cardiac surgeons in the nation.  We take great pride in providing superior care and service to everyone in our region in a manner that is exceedingly rare to find in any non-urban environment.”

The Top 50 Cardiovascular Hospitals study is part of IBM Watson’s 100 Top Hospitals® Program.  The winning hospitals were announced in the Nov. 6, 2017, edition of Modern Healthcare magazine.


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.

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