Salt Lake Regional Medical Center Earns Blue Distinction® Center+ Designation for Quality and Cost-Efficiency in Knee and Hip Replacement Surgeries

October 2020– Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah has selected Salt Lake Regional Medical Center as a Blue Distinction Center+ for Knee and Hip Replacement, part of the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program. Blue Distinction Centers are nationally designated healthcare facilities that show a commitment to delivering high-quality patient safety and better health outcomes, based on objective measures that were developed with input from the medical community and leading accreditation and quality organizations.

Facilities designated as Blue Distinction Centers® for Knee and Hip Replacement demonstrate expertise in total knee and total hip replacement surgeries, resulting in fewer patient complications and hospital readmissions. Designated facilities include hospitals (with and without an onsite Intensive Care Unit) and Ambulatory Surgery Centers (ASC). All designated facilities must maintain national accreditation, and ASCs are also required to have an advanced orthopedic certification. In addition to meeting these quality thresholds, hospitals designated as Blue Distinction Centers+ are on average 20 percent more cost-efficient in an episode of care compared to other facilities.

Knee and hip replacement procedures remain some of the most commonly performed, elective surgical procedures in the U.S., according to a 2018 study released by the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. In 2014 there were 370,770 total hip replacements and 680,150 total knee replacements1.

Salt Lake Regional Medical Center is proud to be recognized by Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah for meeting the robust selection criteria for knee and hip replacements set by the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program.

Quality is key: only those facilities that first meet nationally established, objective quality measures will be considered for designation as a Blue Distinction Center+.

“We are committed to providing our patients with the highest quality of care possible through the use of advanced medical technologies and a professional medical staff dedicated to giving our patients exceptional care and service,” said Bryan McKinley, CEO, Salt Lake Regional Medical Center. “The Blue Distinction designation from Blue Cross Blue Shield Association speaks to the quality of our patient outcomes and the unwavering commitment of our staff.”

“It takes a focused effort to ensure the continuous delivery of safe, cost-effective patient care that improves lives,” said Eric Hales, vice president of network management at Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah. “We commend Salt Lake Regional Medical Center for meeting rigorous quality standards and, as a result, achieving designation as a Blue Distinction Center+ for Knee and Hip Replacement.”

The Blue Distinction Specialty Care program has helped patients find quality care in the areas of bariatric surgery, cancer care, cardiac care, cellular immunotherapy, fertility care, gene therapy, knee and hip replacements, maternity care, spine surgery, substance use treatment and recovery and transplants. Research for many of these programs show that, compared to other providers, those designated as Blue Distinction Centers demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients.

For more information about the program and for a complete listing of designated facilities, visit www.bcbs.com/bluedistinction.

About Steward Health Care

Steward Health Care is the largest private, for-profit health care network in the United States. The company is owned and led by a management team of Steward Physicians.

Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, Steward employs more than 40,000 health care professionals and operates 35 hospitals across the United States and in the country of Malta which regularly receive top awards for quality and safety. The Steward network includes multiple urgent care centers and skilled nursing facilities, substantial behavioral health services, more than 7,000 beds under management, and approximately 2.2 million full risk covered lives through the company's managed care and health insurance services.

The Steward Health Care Network includes more than 5,000 physicians across 800 communities who help to provide more than 12 million patient encounters annually. Steward Medical Group, the company's employed physician group, provides more than six million patient encounters per year. The Steward Hospital Group operates hospitals in Malta and nine states across the U.S., including Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Utah. For more information, visit www.steward.org.

About Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah 
Based in Salt Lake City, Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah is the state’s first health insurer. As a tax-paying nonprofit independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, Regence is part of a family of companies dedicated to transforming health care by delivering innovative products and services that change the way consumers in Utah and nationwide experience health care. For more information, please visit regence.com, facebook.com/regenceutah, or twitter.com/regenceutah.

About Blue Cross Blue Shield Association
The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association is a national federation of 36 independent, community-based and locally operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies that collectively provide health care coverage for one in three Americans. BCBSA provides health care insights through The Health of America Report series and the national BCBS Health Index. For more information on BCBSA and its member companies, please visit BCBS.com. We also encourage you to connect with us on Facebook, check out our videos on YouTube and follow us on Twitter

About Blue Distinction Centers
Blue Distinction Centers (BDC) met overall quality measures for patient safety and outcomes, developed with input from the medical community. A Local Blue Plan may require additional criteria for facilities located in its own service area; for details, contact your Local Blue Plan. Blue Distinction Centers+ (BDC+) also met cost measures that address consumers’ need for affordable health care. Each facility’s cost of care is evaluated using data from its Local Blue Plan. Facilities in CA, ID, NY, PA, and WA may lie in two Local Blue Plans’ areas, resulting in two evaluations for cost of care; and their own Local Blue Plans decide whether one or both cost of care evaluation(s) must meet BDC+ national criteria. National criteria for BDC and BDC+ are displayed on bcbs.com. Individual outcomes may vary. For details on a provider’s in-network status or your own policy’s coverage, contact your Local Blue Plan and ask your provider before making an appointment. Neither Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association nor any Blue Plans are responsible for non-covered charges or other losses or damages resulting from Blue Distinction or other provider finder information or care received from Blue Distinction or other providers.

1 American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, Changing Demographics in Primary and Revision Total Joint Arthroplasty, 2000-2014 Matthew Sloan, Neil P Sheth, March 06, 2018.  

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