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Independence Health System Continues to Earn National Recognition for Maternity Care

Independence Health System Continues to Earn National Recognition for Maternity Care

Repeat Designation Comes From U.S. News & World Report

           GREENSBURG, PA, December 5, 2023 … Independence Health System and Westmoreland Hospital are once again recognized for exemplary maternity services, with continuing recognition by U.S. News & World Report as a 2023-2024 High Performing Hospital for Maternity Care (Uncomplicated Pregnancy). This is the highest award a hospital can earn for U.S. News’ Best Hospitals for Maternity Care. 

The annual evaluation is designed to assist expectant parents and their doctors in making informed decisions about where to receive maternity care. 

Independence Health System Westmoreland Hospital and its Family Additions Maternity Center earned a High Performing designation in recognition of maternity care as measured by factors such as newborn complication rates. 

U.S. News evaluated hospitals from across the nation that provide labor and delivery services and submitted detailed data to the publication for analysis; 680 hospitals, an all-time high, participated in this year’s U.S. News survey. Fewer than half – 46% – of all hospitals that offer maternity care and participated in the survey received a High Performing designation. 

“Hospitals that receive a High Performing designation as part of Best Hospitals for Maternity Care meet a high standard in caring for parents with uncomplicated pregnancies,” said Jennifer Winston, health data scientist at U.S. News. “These hospitals have C-section rates that are 26% lower, and newborn complication rates that are 37% lower than unrecognized hospitals. Parents-to-be can research their local hospitals’ performance metrics for free at to help them choose where to have their baby.”

The U.S. News Best Hospitals for Maternity Care methodology is based entirely on objective measures of quality, such as C-section rates in lower-risk pregnancies, newborn complication rates, exclusive breast milk feeding rates, early elective delivery rates, birthing-friendly practices and transparency on racial/ethnic disparities, among other measures.

“It is such an honor to be considered one of the best hospitals for Maternity by U.S. News,” said Independence Health System obstetrician Randi Turkewitz, MD, FACOG.  “We strive each and every day to provide the best care possible to all of our patients.  Instituting multiple safety measures and following best practice guidelines have allowed us to provide this expert care to our patients in the maternity center.  It is so important that these metrics are available for the public to review so that they feel reassured that the best providers, nurses and staff are taking care of them or their loved ones.  I couldn't be prouder of the dedication and commitment of the team to achieve this recognition.”

Carol Fox, MD, FAAFP, Independence Chief Medical Officer, echoed those sentiments.  “We have a long history of providing exceptional maternal child services to our community.  Beyond labor and delivery, that commitment to quality spans the continuum of care and is also reflected elsewhere in the accolades we continue to receive for a myriad of clinical services.  Data-driven evidence-based care is a hallmark for the health system and we are proud to have those efforts lauded once again.”

Independence Health System Westmoreland Hospital’s Family Additions Maternity Center also ranks among the nation’s leaders as determined by Newsweek, and is named among the Best Maternity Hospitals with this publication for four consecutive years. 

Nationally recognized for quality care, Independence Health System comprises Butler Memorial, Clarion, Frick, Latrobe and Westmoreland Hospitals with a combined bed count of 925.  With more than 1,000 physicians and advanced practice providers and 7,300 employees, the System is now the third largest in western Pennsylvania serving a population base of 750,000 in a footprint spanning more than 10 counties.

The System includes tertiary programs that are rated among America’s best for cardiac care and surgery by Healthgrades in its Top 100 and Top 50 designations, and one of only five in Pennsylvania to achieve a five-star rating in cardiac surgery. In similar fashion, the prestigious Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) bestowed its top three-star rating. Historically, less than 10 percent of programs within the STS data base achieve this elite standing. The hospitals of Independence Health System also have earned a host of accolades from such prestigious outlets and sources as US News and World Report, Newsweek Magazine, the American College of Radiology, the American College of Cardiology, the American College of Surgeons, the Joint Commission, Leapfrog and the American Heart/Stroke Association.

Locally owned and locally controlled, Independence Health System offers its patients low-cost, high-quality care across the care spectrum in such specialties as cardiology, cardiovascular and thoracic surgery, orthopedics and sports medicine, minimally invasive and robotic surgery, women’s health and obstetrics, emergency medicine, behavioral health and primary care. Its network of outpatient centers sees more than 1.2 million visits annually. The homecare division further supports patients at all stages of life with home health and hospice services. 

Independence Health System continues to change the healthcare landscape in western Pennsylvania by meeting patient needs through superb physician expertise, outstanding nursing, the latest in technology and programmatic depth.

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