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      Bell Hospital top rated in the Upper Peninsula

      Consumer Reports has given Bell Hospital a top rating when it comes to preventing infections. Bell is the only U.P. hospital to receive top marks.

      "I think it's a testament to the work that our administrative people, our O.R. manager, our nurses, and our surgeons have put forth to meet quality standards," said Dr. Michael Prevost, Chief of Staff.

      The study was conducted over a period of three years with Medicare patients at over 2,400 U.S. hospitals.

      Bell officials say with about 4,000 surgical procedures a year, less than 10 patients end up with an infection, for a 0.29 percent infection rate.

      "It's making sure a patient is properly prepared, the appropriate antibiotics are taken at the appropriate times to prevent infections. That sterilization procedures are excellent," Prevost added.

      Bell has also adopted what they call Keystone Initiatives to ensure patient safety and quality care during surgeries. Their initiatives are carried out in the design of their operating rooms and usage.

      "All staff entering the room must enter through the sub-sterile. Once you go through those doors, you're required to have a mask on and it just cuts down the airflow from the outside hallway," said Kim Dunlap, Director Surgical Services.

      A second room minimizes the amount of traffic in the hallways and reduces outside air from entering.

      "We always monitor the patient's temperature, and that's one of the things that we monitor on our post-op phone calls just so we can hear, from their point of view, how their experience was," Dunlap said.

      Other U.P. hospitals reviewed by Consumer Reports included Marquette General Hospital, which had an average rating, and Portage Health with a positive rating.

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