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Rating Based on Study of Patient Outcomes at the Nation's Hospitals by HealthGrades

SEATTLE - (Oct. 20, 2010) - Virginia Mason Medical Center received the 2011 HealthGrades Coronary Intervention Excellence AwardTM, Gastrointestinal Care Excellence AwardTM, Pulmonary Care Excellence AwardTM and Critical Care Excellence AwardTM. In addition, Virginia Mason is ranked No. 1 in the state for Overall Cardiac Services, Medical Cardiology Services, Coronary Interventional Procedures and Overall Pulmonary Services, according to HealthGrades' 13th annual Hospital Quality in America study that analyzes patient outcomes at virtually all of the nation's hospitals.

Virginia Mason also received five-star ratings for cardiology services, coronary interventional procedures, treatment of heart attack and stroke, overall pulmonary services, treatment of pneumonia, treatment of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, GI medical treatment, GI procedures and surgeries, bowel obstruction, GI bleed, overall critical care and treatment of sepsis.

"All of us at Virginia Mason are extremely proud of the latest HealthGrades ratings," said Gary S. Kaplan, chairman and CEO. "These results affirm that we are delivering on our commitment to provide the highest quality care for our patients every day."

The HealthGrades study, the largest annual report of its kind, analyzed patient outcomes in nearly 40 million Medicare hospitalization records over a three-year period. HealthGrades' hospital ratings are the leading objective, actionable quality measures based solely on clinical performance made available to the public.

Top-performing hospitals had dramatically lower mortality rates than other hospitals, according to the study. For the 17 procedures and diagnoses for which HealthGrades analyzed mortality rates, patients at top hospitals had a 72 percent lower chance of dying when compared with the lowest-performing hospitals, and a 53 percent lower chance of dying when compared to the U.S. national average.

About HealthGrades Ratings
HealthGrades rates hospitals independently based on data that hospitals submit to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid services, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. No hospital can opt in or out of being rated, and no hospital pays to be rated.

For 26 procedures and medical treatments, HealthGrades issues star ratings that reflect the mortality and complication rates for each category of care. Hospitals receiving a five-star rating have mortality or complication rates that are below the national average, to a statistically significant degree. A three-star rating means the hospital performs as expected. One-star ratings indicate the hospital's mortality or complication rates in that procedure or treatment are statistically higher than average. Because the risk profiles of patient populations at hospitals are not alike, HealthGrades risk-adjusts the data to allow for equal comparisons.

More information on today's HealthGrades study, including the complete methodology, can be found at healthgrades.com.

About Virginia Mason Medical Center
Virginia Mason Medical Center, founded in 1920, is a non-profit comprehensive regional health care system in Seattle that combines a primary and specialty care group practice of more than 440 physicians with a 336-bed acute-care hospital. Virginia Mason operates a network of clinics throughout the Puget Sound area, and Bailey-Boushay House, a skilled-nursing facility and Chronic Care Management program for people with HIV/AIDS. The medical center is affiliated with Benaroya Research Institute at Virginia Mason, internationally recognized in autoimmune disease research. Virginia Mason is known for applying manufacturing principles to health care to improve quality and patient safety. For more information, visit VirginiaMason.org or Facebook/VMcares or follow @VirginiaMason on Twitter.

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(206) 341-1509

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