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12/21/2010 St. Mary Medical Center

Joint Academy Receives Distinguished Joint Commission Accreditation

Bill Mercer takes a walk in the Clubhouse of the
Joint Academy to try out his new knee during a
therapy session.

HOBART - St. Mary Medical Center is the only hospital in northern Indiana to have earned The Joint Commission’s Gold Seal of Approval™ for both knee and hip replacement from The Joint Commission’s national standards for health care quality and safety in disease-specific care. The certification award recognizes St. Mary Medical Center’s dedication to continuous compliance with The Joint Commission’s state-of-the- art standards.

St. Mary Medical Center’s innovative program for knee and hip replacement, The Joint Academy, underwent a rigorous on-site survey in December. A Joint Commission expert surveyor evaluated the hospital’s Joint Academy for compliance with standards of care specific to the needs of patients and families, including infection prevention and control, patient safety, leadership, medication management, and positive patient outcomes.

"In achieving Joint Commission certification in both knee and hip replacement procedures, St. Mary Medical Center has demonstrated its commitment to the highest level of care for these patients," says Jean Range, M.S., R.N., C.P.H.Q. executive director, Disease-Specific Care Certification, The Joint Commission. “Certification is a voluntary process and I commend St. Mary Medical Center for successfully undertaking this challenge to place their knee and hip replacement programs under these stringent reviews.”

"Joint Commission accreditation confirms our hospital’s commitment toward creating a culture of excellence,” says Janice Ryba, CEO, St. Mary Medical Center. “Achieving Joint Commission certification in both knee and hip replacement, for our organization, is a major step toward maintaining excellence and continually improving the quality of care we provide.”

As one of only two Indiana hospitals to achieve Joint Commission accreditation in knee and hip replacement, St. Mary Medical Center adds to its long list of awards for quality, positive patient outcomes, and patient satisfaction within the Joint Academy. In 2009, the Joint Academy was the only joint replacement program in Northwest Indiana to be designated as a Blue Distinction Center by the Blue Cross, Blue Shield companies.

“When we launched the Joint Academy in May 2008, we had confidence this innovative approach would be successful,” says Scott Andrews, M.D., orthopedic surgeon and medical director of the Joint Academy. “But today, I can say we’ve exceeded our expectations and I think it’s safe to say, we have set a new standard of excellence for knee and hip replacements programs in Northwest Indiana.”

The Joint Commission’s Disease-Specific Care Certification Program, launched in 2002, is designed to evaluate clinical programs across the continuum of care. Certification requirements address three core areas: compliance with consensus-based national standards; effective use of evidence-based clinical practice guidelines to manage and optimize care; and an organized approach to performance measurement and improvement activities.

For more information about the accredited Joint Academy at St. Mary Medical Center in Hobart, visit us online at or call 219-945-4365.


219-947-6381 Mary Fetsch, director Marketing and Community Relations