Alaska-based Military Hospital Earns National Recognition for Patient Safety (2024)

Alaska-based Military Hospital Earns National Recognition for Patient Safety (1)Spc. Victoria Wilkerson (right), a surgical tech for Medical Department Activity Alaska, hands a surgical instrument to Capt. Joseph Durso (middle) who is performing ankle surgery alongside Maj. Anthony Mustovich at Bassett Army Community Hospital September 15. (Photo By Brandy Ostanik-Thornton)

5/22/2024By:Elaine Sanchez, Defense Health Agency

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The military hospital on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, earned an “A” for excellence in patient safety earlier this month, making it one of nine military hospitals from across the nation that received a top score from The Leapfrog Group.

As with school report cards, Leapfrog, a national nonprofit focused on patient safety, assigns a grade from “A” to “F” to nearly 3,000 hospitals across the nation each year based on over 30 national performance measures reflecting factors such as accidents, injuries, errors and infections, and the hospital systems in place to prevent harm.

“This independent validation of our staff’s commitment to safe, high-quality healthcare provides confidence to our beneficiaries that they can trust us with their care in our hospital, outpatient clinics, and operational medicine facilities,” said Air Force Col. Laura Baugh, commander, 673rd Medical Group. “I am incredibly proud of our entire healthcare team.”

JBER hospital, fondly known as “J-Bear,” is a Department of Defense and Veterans Affairs joint venture hospital that offers primary, specialty, outpatient, and inpatient care to nearly 160,000 DOD and VA beneficiaries in the Anchorage area. With the temperature extremes in Alaska, JBER healthcare professionals also play a key role in ensuring the health and well-being of service members and their families acclimating to Arctic conditions.

The “A” grade is a testament to the hard work of the JBER team and their shared commitment to putting patients first, Baugh noted.

“This achievement highlights the strong efforts of our medical providers and staff to maintain the highest levels of patient safety,” she said. “Our unwavering commitment to delivering safe and effective care takes constancy of purpose at all levels.”

The Military Health Systemis the first federal health system to participate in the Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade program. Currently, all military inpatient hospitals and clinics track and report areas that are surveyed in the program.

“Our participation in Leapfrog, and other organizations like it, illustrates our steadfast commitment to transparency and delivering the highest standard of safe, quality care,” said Defense Health Network CentralDirector Maj. Gen. Thomas Harrell. “I’m extremely proud of the patient safety efforts taking place at JBER and in our military hospitals and clinics across the enterprise.”

To learn more the Military Health System’s commitment to patient safety and transparency, visit the Quality, Patient Safety and Accesshub. From there, it’s a quick search to see how military medical facilities score on industry standard measures for patient safety, health care outcomes, quality of care, patient satisfaction, and access to care.

For more information about this recognition or to see the full list of military medical facilities with an “A” grade, visit

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Alaska-based Military Hospital Earns National Recognition for Patient Safety (2024)
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