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Published on June 15, 2016

Mercy Medical Center receives Planetree Gold Designation as a person-centered organization

Mercy is largest organization in the U.S., Canada and the Netherlands to receive designation

Planetree GoldMercy Medical Center has been formally designated by Planetree, Inc. as a Planetree Gold Designated® Person-Centered Organization. This designation recognizes Mercy’s achievement and innovation in the delivery of person-centered care, known within the Mercy organization as The Mercy Touch®.

Mercy is one of only 78 healthcare organizations worldwide, and the largest organization in the U.S., Canada and the Netherlands, to receive the person-centered designation since the program’s launch in 2007. Additionally, Mercy is the only fully integrated healthcare system (inclusive of acute and continuing care, behavioral health, outpatient services and hospice) in the world to receive this recognition!

"The Planetree designation is the only award that recognizes excellence in person-centeredness across the continuum of care," said Susan Frampton, President of Planetree, Inc., an international not-for-profit organization at the forefront of the movement to transform healthcare from the perspective of the patient for more than 35 years. "The designation signals to healthcare consumers that Mercy Medical Center is an organization where providers partner with patients, residents and families, and where patient comfort, dignity, empowerment and well-being are prioritized with providing top-quality clinical care."

The criteria that an organization must satisfy to achieve designation reflect what patients, residents, family members and healthcare professionals in hundreds of focus groups say matters most to them during a healthcare experience. This qualitative data aligns with the growing evidence for person-centered care, and establishes the Planetree designation as a concrete framework for defining and measuring excellence in person-centeredness.

More than 60 specific criteria address components of a person-centered healthcare experience, including patient-provider interactions, access to information, family involvement, the physical environment, food and nutrition, spirituality, arts and entertainment, and integrative therapies. In addition, the criteria focus on how the organization is supporting its staff; opportunities for staff, patients, residents and families to have a voice in the way care is delivered; and the ways that the organization is reaching beyond its walls to care for its community.

Guided by these core components of a person-centered culture, Mercy has been working toward Planetree Gold designation for five years. The healthcare system continues to implement initiatives and practices designed to enhance both the patient and staff experience.

"To be recognized by Planetree as one of its most patient-centered organizations in its world-wide family of healthcare institutions is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our entire staff," said Tim Charles, Mercy president and CEO.

As part of the designation process — which included a site visit by representatives from Planetree — focus groups with recent Mercy Medical Center patients, Hallmar residents, patient families and current staff validated that specific person-centered policies are in place, including non-restrictive visiting hours and an open medical chart policy; that staff members at all levels are involved in the implementation of person-centered care; and that the organization’s physical environment is a healing one engaging all of the human senses. The process also included a review of the organization’s performance on patient satisfaction and quality of care measures, and how measurement of these indicators improves organizational outcomes.

Learn more about Planetree at Mercy.

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