Weiss Memorial Hospital Receives Blue Distinction Center+ Designation


The Blue Distinction® Designation Aids Consumers and Employers in Choosing High-Performing Hospitals

CHICAGO (February 21, 2013) — Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois has named Weiss Memorial Hospital as a Blue Distinction Center+ in Knee and Hip Replacement. The Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care® program is a national designation awarded by Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies to medical facilities that have demonstrated expertise in delivering quality specialty care – which expanded recently to include more robust quality measures focused on improved patient health and safety, as well as new cost-efficiency measures.

Since 2006, consumers, medical providers and employers have relied on the Blue Distinction program to identify hospitals delivering quality care in Bariatric Surgery, Cardiac Care, Complex and Rare Cancers, Knee and Hip Replacements, Spine Surgery, and Transplants. The selection criteria used to evaluate facilities were developed with input from the medical community and include general quality and safety metrics plus program specific metrics. Weiss is proud to have met the rigorous selection criteria set by the Blue Distinction Centers for Specialty Care program.

“Our team of medical professionals has worked hard to meet quality-focused standards that emphasize patient safety and outcomes while better managing the cost of care,” said Tony Tedeschi, M.D., chief executive officer at Weiss. “We are committed to delivering value-based healthcare, so we are thrilled to be recognized with the Total Value Designation for our knee and hip replacement program.”

Henry Finn, M.D., F.A.C.S., medical director of the Chicago Center for Orthopedics at Weiss, chairman of surgery at Weiss and professor of surgery at the University of Chicago, added, “We hope this distinction gives our patients further confidence in the care they receive at Weiss, and the value of our knee and hip replacement team brings to Chicago’s North Side community.”

Research confirms that the newly designated Blue Distinction Centers+ demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients, with lower rates of complications and readmissions than their peers. Blue Distinction Centers+ also are more than 20 percent more cost-efficient. The program provides consumers with tools to help them make better-informed healthcare decisions.  These results will also enable employers, working with their local Blue Plan, to tailor benefits to meet their individual quality and cost objectives.

About Weiss Memorial Hospital
Weiss Memorial Hospital is a Joint Commission-accredited, 236-bed community healthcare facility on Chicago’s North Side overlooking Lake Michigan. With more than 400 doctors—many whom are academically affiliated—and 43 medical specialties, the hospital meets the needs of its patients through a full range of services, offering technologically advanced diagnostics and effective treatments in a convenient community setting. Weiss embraces the principles of nonprofit healthcare and aligns them with the business acumen of an investor-owned organization to strengthen each hospital’s position, making them leaders in the delivery of healthcare for the communities they serve. For more information, visit WeissHospital.com.

About Blue Cross and Blue Shield
The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association is a national federation of 38 independent, community-based and locally operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies that collectively provide healthcare coverage for 100 million members – one-in-three Americans.  For more information on the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association and its member companies, please visit 
www.BCBS.com.  We encourage you to connect with us on Facebook, check out our videos on YouTube, follow us on Twitter and check out The BCBS Blog, for up-to-date information about BCBSA.

About Blue Distinction® Centers
Blue Distinction® Centers met overall quality measures for patient safety and outcomes, developed with input from the medical community. Blue Distinction® Centers+ also met cost measures that address consumers’ need for affordable healthcare. Individual outcomes may vary. National criteria is displayed on 
www.bcbs.com.  A Local Blue Plan may require additional criteria for facilities located in its own service area.  To find out which services and providers (including hospital based doctors) are covered under your policy, or to learn about Local Blue Plan Criteria, contact your Local Blue Plan; and contact your provider before making an appointment to verify its current Network and Blue Distinction Centers status. Each hospital’s Cost Index is calculated separately, based on data from its Local Blue Plan. Hospitals in portions of CA, ID, NY, PA, and WA may lie in areas served by two Local Blue Plans, resulting in two Cost Index figures; and their own Local Blue Plans decide whether all hospitals in these areas must meet Blue Distinction Centers+ national criteria for one or both Cost Index figures. Neither Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association nor any Blue Plans are responsible for damages, losses, or non-covered charges resulting from Blue Distinction or other provider finder information or care received from Blue Distinction or other providers.  To find out more, contact your Local Blue Plan.

For more information contact:
Weiss Public Relations
(773) 564-7285