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Our Quality

Patient and MLKCH nurse

Our Quality

The quality of the care we provide to our patients matters at Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Hospital (MLKCH).  On this page you can learn more about our commitment to high-quality care, what we do to ensure excellence, and our impressive results.

Gold seal of The Joint Commission for Hospital Accreditation

MLKCH has received The Joint Commission Gold Seal of Approval™ for Hospital Accreditation by demonstrating continuous compliance with its performance standards. The Gold Seal of Approval® is a symbol of quality that reflects an organization’s commitment to providing safe and effective patient care.  

HealthCare’s Most Wired Winner 2019

MLKCH is one of only 6.4% of hospitals in the nation that has achieved HIMSS‐7 – the highest level of electronic medical record keeping. Our high‐tech system allows healthcare providers to quickly see a patient’s medical records, prescriptions and lab results. This enables doctors, nurses, specialists and others to respond faster to a patient’s needs. For this reason, we have once again been voted Healthcare’s “Most Wired.”

Leapfrog grade A award for patient safety

Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Hospital (MLKCH) received the highest grade “A” for patient safety from the prestigious Leapfrog Group. The “A” rating is achieved by only one-third of hospitals nationwide. The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade is a bi-annual evaluation of more than 2,600 hospitals nationwide on how well they protect their patients from errors, injuries, accidents and infections.

2019 Top Performer Award from Association for Healthcare Philanthropy

The MLK Community Health Foundation, which raises money for the hospital, is a “top performer” among community hospitals, according to the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy. The award represents hospitals that reached the top 25% in net fundraising returns out of all participating community hospitals, raising more than $3.1 million in the U.S. and more than $8.5 million in Canada. The recognition is an indication of the strong support MLKCH has in Los Angeles, and nationwide.

Cal Hospital Compare logo and Maternity Honor Roll

Low C-section rates have once again placed Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Hospital (MLKCH) on the Cal Hospital Compare Maternity Honor Roll. Caesarean sections, or C-sections, place women and babies at higher risk of post-delivery complications and can complicate future childbirth, according to Cal Hospital Compare. MLKCH has been on the Honor Roll since 2019, when the recognition was launched. Read more about this recognition here.

Photo of NCQA logo

MLKCH recently received the prestigious Population Health Program Accreditation from The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). Not only is it unusual for a small hospital like ours to get this accreditation, but we also received a near perfect score. This accreditation is the first step in becoming a center of excellence for diabetes, a disease that plagues many in South Los Angeles. 

How we deliver high-quality care

In order to achieve the best possible results for our patients, MLKCH adheres to national standards of excellence. Those standards include:

We have a Maternity Safety Program
MLKCH takes a coordinated approach to pregnancy and childbirth that includes doctors, midwives and specialists available to our patients at all times. We also partner with the First 5 Welcome Baby Program, which assists new moms with education and support.

We have an Infection Control Program
MLKCH has a “sepsis protocol” – a plan in place that guides health care workers on how to prevent infection at every stage of patient care.

We have a Respiratory Monitoring Program
MLKCH provides round-the-clock monitoring of patients who have trouble with their lungs or are having trouble breathing.

We have met or exceeded National Patient Safety Goals
MLKCH meets national goals on patient safety as required by the Joint Commission, a healthcare accreditation organization. These goals include having processes in place to ensure that medicine is administered properly, hand washing guidelines are followed, and a process is in place to prevent patient falls.

Learn more about National Patient Safety Goals.

We protect our patients from the flu
MLKCH offers all employees a flu shot in an effort to protect its employees, patients and visitors against the disease. In 2018, almost all MLKCH staff and patients received a flu shot, exceeding the national standard.

We enforce compliance
MLKCH has a Compliance Department that ensures that all staff follow proper procedures in the care and treatment of patients through training, enforcement and constant awareness-raising activities. A confidential compliance hotline is also available to help employees report issues that affect our quality.

We walk the walk
MLKCH leadership visit patients and observe the way our health team provides care on a regular basis. This visiting, or “rounding,” helps us learn about our care process and what can be improved and helps us promote a culture of safety.

Our results

MLKCH has achieved impressive results in a number of measures of hospital quality. Those measures include:

Bar chart for data comparing C-section rates. MLKCH is at 6.2 percent, California is at 23.5 percent and the nation is at 25.9 percent.

C-Section Rates

What this means: A C-section, or cesarean section, is a surgical procedure used to deliver a baby through an incision made in a mother's abdomen and uterus. A C-section is associated with risk of maternal mortality.  

Why it matters: A C-section is a major surgery that exposes women to risks like infection or hemorrhage. MLKCH has a C-section rate that is less than half the California hospital average, and well below the 23.9 percent target set recently for low-risk births by Covered California. MLKCH attributes its success to a unique model of 24/7 obstetric teams that include both a laborist and a midwife.

Source: Hospital Quality Institute, 2020

Bar chart for data comparing IV infection rate with MLKCH at 0 percent, California at .78 percent and the nation at .74 percent.

IV Related Infections

What this means: An “IV” is a small tube that is inserted into a vein in order to deliver medicine or other support fluids. If IVs are not inserted properly or are left in place too long, infection can result.

Why it matters: IV-related infections can complicate a patient’s recovery.  Fewer IV infections means healthier patients and better results. Preventing infections is a priority for all hospitals.

Source: Hospital Quality Institute, 2020

Bar chart for data comparing sepsis mortality. MLKCH has 9.75 percent, California has 14.3 percent and the national rate is 25 percent.

Sepsis Mortality

What this means: Sepsis is an overwhelming blood infection created by the spread of a localized infection.

Why it matters: Sepsis is a very serious medical condition that can result in significant disability or death.  Recognizing and treating sepsis is a high priority for MLKCH.

Source: Hospital Quality Institute, 2020

Bar chart for 2020 data comparing colon surgery related infections. MLKCH has 0 percent, California has .97 percent and the national rate is .90 percent.

Colon Surgery Related Infections

What this means: Colorectal surgery is a common procedure to address disorders of the rectum, anus, and colon. Because of the location and complexity of these operations, patients are at risk of infection.

Why it matters: Lower rates of colon surgery related infections are evidence that a hospital follows proper care procedures before, during and after surgery.  These procedures include ensuring that the patient has fasted, cleaning the surgery site well, using a wound protector and administering protective antibiotics.

Source: Hospital Quality Institute, 2020