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Lessons from a Top 100 Teaching Hospital

As a teaching hospital, St. Joseph’s Medical Center (SJMC) has a unique perspective on training highly skilled, compassionate, and well-rounded physicians. Located in California’s Central Valley, SJMC cares for an ethnically, culturally, and socio-economically diverse population.  But what makes us truly unique is that we believe in the healing power of humanity. 

We know that Humankindness and compassion are essential elements of patient care. 

For more than 100 years, St. Joseph’s Medical Center has made patient-centered care a priority. That’s why we are so honored to be named a 2022 Fortune/Merative 100 Top Hospitals®. 

The recognition is St. Joseph’s first time among the top-performing teaching hospitals in the U.S. “We are honored to receive this national recognition from Fortune/Merative,” said Don Wiley, president and CEO of St. Joseph’s Medical Center. “It is a true testament to the dedication of our clinical staff in ensuring patients receive quality care and to our Community Health department in developing and implementing programs that improve the health of the San Joaquin community.”

Merative, a data, analytics, and technology partner for the health industry, has identified the top hospitals from a rigorous evaluation of 2,650 short-term, acute care, non-federal hospitals in the U.S. The annual list recognizes excellence in clinical outcomes, operational efficiency, patient experience, and financial health. Merative, formerly IBM Watson Health, established the list to help identify best practices that may help other healthcare organizations achieve consistent, balanced, and sustainable high performance.

“Building the Graduate Medical Education programs at St Joseph’s has been a privilege, and a dream realized for so many responsible for bringing this educational endeavor to the Central Valley. It is truly an honor to be recognized,” said Jennifer Oakes, MD; DIO, EM Program Director. “We are dedicated to training highly-skilled physicians in evidence-based medicine and creating an environment of inquiry, intellectual curiosity, and professional growth rooted in patient-centered service.” Dr. Oakes adds, “Our residents become involved in all aspects of medical care and administration, even outside of their specific specialty training requirements, including patient experience, patient safety, and creating quality improvement initiatives during their training. We have a mission to recruit, train, and retain physicians dedicated to the service of our community and the surrounding areas.”

This unique approach to training physicians in all aspects of patient care is what attracted Dr. Kristina Thomas to the St. Joseph’s Residency Program. “Training at a top teaching hospital is preparing me to become both a skilled and compassionate physician,” said Kristina Thomas, MD, Chief Resident, Emergency Medicine. “I have the privilege of being trained by incredible attending physicians, nurses, and staff who play a vital role in my education and teach beyond just medical knowledge. St. Joseph's residents are trained to take a comprehensive approach when caring for our patient's health and wellbeing. After graduating from this residency program, I am confident that I can work anywhere in the world and will provide exceptional care to that community while spreading humankindness.

Hospitals included on the Fortune/Merative 100 Top Hospitals list have better results on critical clinical and operational performance indicators, including survival rates, patient complications, healthcare-associated infections, 30-day mortality and 30-day hospital-wide readmission rates, length of stay, throughput in emergency departments, inpatient expenses, profitability, and patient ratings. The Fortune/Merative 100 Top Hospitals list also incorporates a community health measure into its ranking process.