Safety Measures

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:

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 C-section rates. MLKCH is at 6.2 percent, California is at 23.5 percent and the nation is at 25.9 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 IV infection rate with MLKCH at 0 percent, California at .78 percent and the nation at .74 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 data comparing sepsis mortality. MLKCH has 9.75 percent, California has 14.3 percent and the national rate is 25 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

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.