Quality Measures

How We Measure Preventing Serious Complications

Preventing Serious Complications measures how likely it is that patients will have complications while in the hospital or after having some tests or kinds of surgery. This score uses ten Patient Safety Indicators (PSI) from the Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality (AHRQ):

  1. Pressure sores (pressure ulcers, PSI #03)
  2. Collapsed lung due to medical treatment (iatrogenic pneumothorax, PSI #06)
  3. Broken hip from a fall after surgery (postoperative hip fracture rate, PSI #08)
  4. Bleeding or bruising during surgery (perioperative hemorrhage or hematoma, PSI #09)
  5. Kidney and diabetic complications after surgery (postoperative acute kidney injury requiring dialysis, PSI #10)
  6. Respiratory failure after surgery (postoperative respiratory failure, PSI #11)
  7. Blood clots, in the lung or a large vein, before, during or after surgery (deep vein thrombosis, PSI #12)
  8. Blood stream infection after surgery (postoperative sepsis, PSI #13)
  9. A wound that splits open after surgery (postoperative wound dehiscence, PSI #14)
  10. Accidental cuts and tears during abdominal or pelvic surgery (Unrecognized Abdominopelvic Accidental Puncture/Laceration Rate, PSI #15)

Higher rates of these serious complications may be a sign of poorer quality hospital care. Hospitals can often prevent these complications if they follow the right steps.

Our data for this measure comes from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). The data on CompareMaine covers the July 1, 2016 – June 30, 2018 reporting period. Visit the CMS website on serious complications for more information.