SSM Home Care at St. Francis Hospital & Health Services in Maryville has been named to the 2012 HomeCare Elite Top 100, a compilation of the best-performing home health agencies in the United States.
"This is a top honor for SSM Home Care in Maryville and the wonderful community we serve," said SSM Home Health Care President Alison Ruehl. "It is a testament to our dedicated staff and caregivers, who go the extra mile each and every day for our patients."
The HomeCare Elite list identifies what it believes are the leading 25 percent of home health operations and further highlights the top 100 and top 500 agencies overall.
Winners are ranked by an "analysis of publicly available performance measures in quality outcomes, process measure implementation, patient experience, quality improvement and financial performance."
It's been a banner year for the home health provider, which is administered locally by Branch Manager Debbie Herring.
In October, SSM Home Care received the 2012 Missouri Quality Award, the state's leading recognition for organizations that implement management systems based on established principles related to best-practices, accountability and client satisfaction.
Herring said both awards serve to let Maryville-area residents know that family members in need of home health care have access to a system made up of of caring, professional providers.
"Finding outstanding caregivers to provide home health services can be stressful, and we hope these independent assessments of our capabilities help provide a sense of security that their loved ones are receiving truly exceptional care," Herring said.
She added that the awards are especially significant given the agency's small size and high patient volume. In addition to Herring, SSM Home Care's staff consists of three nurses (one of whom is half-time), a physical therapist, assistant physical therapist, occupational therapist, speech therapist, social worker, home health aid and case manager assistant.
Nevertheless, with fewer than a dozen professionals, the organization is able to provide top-flight home health care to more than 360 patients a year over an area embracing six counties: Nodaway, Holt, Atchison, Gentry, Worth and the northern portion of Andrew.
One of the secrets to the operation's success, Herring said, is staff longevity, with care providers possessing an aggregate of more than 100 years of experience.
"Our nurses, our staff, are very qualified. They like their jobs, and they stay here," Herring said. "I think that says a lot. We are such a small department, but our nurses are really out there, moving from one patient to another and still providing all this quality care and expertise."
The HomeCare Elite survey is co-sponsored by National Research Corp., a company specializing in health-care analysis and assessment, and DecisionHealth, publisher of the Home Health Line newsletter.
"The 2012 HomeCare Elite winners demonstrate a commitment to providing patient-centered care and serving as leaders in the home health community," said National Research Corp. President Susan L. Henricks. "We congratulate SSM St. Francis Hospital on being one of the top 100 home care agencies in the country."
Page 2 of 2 - St. Francis Hospital & Health Care in Maryville is operated by St. Louis-based SSM Health Care, a Catholic, not-for-profit health system that owns or manages hospitals and other health-care institutions in Wisconsin, Oklahoma, Illinois and Missouri.
The entire list of 2012 HomeCare Elite agencies is available by going to the National Research Corp. website at www.nationalresearch.com.