PALMER — Mat-Su Regional Medical Center has been named the 2019 winner of the Alaska State Hospital and Nursing Home Association’s (ASHNHA) patient safety award, “High Reliability: Persevering in the Pursuit of Zero Patient Harm.”

The award brings statewide recognition to Mat-Su Regional for its exemplary commitment to developing comprehensive systems processes that lead to better patient care, according to Lynn Van Vactor, Director of Quality and Performance Improvement for ASHNHA.

“The High Reliability award has extremely high standards to meet and Mat-Su has met those standards by not only creating systems of safety to engage staff every day – like the safety coach program and daily safety huddles – but also by producing results, including more than three years of having zero safety events,” Van Vactor said. “The hospital has maintained high rankings in safety domains at both the state and national levels.”

“It takes the entire hospital to be devoted to the safety of our patients and that safety culture is something that is strongly instilled at Mat-Su Regional Medical Center,” said Jennifer Moore, Chief Quality Officer of Mat-Su Regional.

It will be five years in October since the hospital has experienced a Serious Safety Event, which is defined as moderate to severe permanent harm or death to a patient that could have been preventable. Mat-Su Regional also stands out as first in the state of Alaska in all safety metrics based on data collected by the Hospital Improvement Innovation Network (HIIM). These accomplishments are part of the reason Mat-Su Regional earned this honor from ASHNHA, Moore added.

ASHNHA evaluates a hospital in the following areas for the High Reliability award:

· Implementation of widespread system changes to preclude human error.

· System-wide programs that celebrate a culture of safety and communication.

· Innovative solutions to common safety issues or sources of harm that are spread throughout the organization.

· Prompt response and change in the wake of an event of harm or near-miss event, reflecting an organizational culture of safety and zero harm expectations.

“We are very proud of this recognition from the state, as well as of this High Reliability journey that we will remain committed to,” Moore said.

The hospital was formally presented with the award at the ASHNHA annual conference on Sept. 26.

Mat-Su Regional Medical Center is a member of the Mayo Clinic Care Network. It is a 109-bed acute care healthcare facility providing advanced surgical service, including robotic-assisted partial and total knee and total hip replacement, cardiac care, emergency services, sleep studies, three urgent care centers, the Family Birthing Center and is home to the 30-Minutes-or-Less ER Service Pledge. Mat-Su Regional is accredited as a Chest Pain Center by the American College of Cardiology, and as an Acute Stroke Ready Hospital by The Joint Commission. The hospital has twice been named one of the Top 150 Places to Work in Healthcare by Becker’s Hospital Review. To learn more about Mat-Su Regional, visit

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