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Temple Health Achieves Impressive Patient Outcomes During the COVID-19 Pandemic


Leadership matters in a crisis. From the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, that’s exactly what Temple University Hospital provided.


Now, patient survival data prove it.


“From day one, Temple became a focal point in the fight against COVID-19, both locally and nationally,” says Michael A. Young, MHA, FACHE, President and CEO of Temple University Health System and Temple University Hospital.


“We initially treated the most patients in the region, many of whom were at the highest risk of becoming very sick and dying. We also collaborated with other hospitals and governmental agencies to develop a comprehensive COVID response plan, educated the public and healthcare providers about the virus and how to stay safe, and conducted research to better understand and control the virus.”


In the most important area — patient survival — Temple outperformed most other hospitals.


According to data from the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Medicare Catchment Area Report 2021, Temple’s COVID-19 outcomes compare favorably to state and national benchmarks. The report looked at Temple’s Medicare inpatients with a COVID-19 diagnosis from January 2020 through June 2020.


Experience and Expertise Lead to Superior Outcomes


“The most noteworthy statistic shows that Temple’s inpatient COVID mortality rate was 15% lower than Pennsylvania and 28% lower than the United States,” says Gerard Criner, MD, FACP, FACCP, Chair of the Department of Thoracic Medicine and Surgery and Director of the Temple Lung Center. “Put simply, that means patients had a better chance of surviving if they were treated at Temple.”

Gerard J. Criner, MD, FACP, FACCP


Other notable data points include:

  • Within 30 days after leaving the hospital, Temple’s COVID patient mortality rates were 32% and 33% lower than the state and nation, respectively.

  • Temple was 21% lower than the national average for percent of COVID patients who required a ventilator, and just 2% above the state average.

  • The percent of Temple’s COVID patients requiring the Intensive Care Unit was 28% lower than the state and 9% lower than the nation.

  • Temple University Hospital’s average length of stay for COVID patients was just a half-day longer than the state average, and the same as the national average.

  • 13% of Temple’s nearly 3,000 Medicare inpatients had a COVID-19 diagnosis, which is significantly higher compared to 7% in Temple’s 5-county catchment area, 4% in Pennsylvania, and 3% across the U.S.

These impressive numbers were made possible because of Temple’s experience and expertise in caring for patients with serious lung disease.

“I applaud Temple’s amazing COVID care teams,” said Young. “Temple’s teams were able to achieve these outcomes taking care of a segment of the population recognized as having the highest risk of getting the sickest and dying from COVID.”


In February 2021, Temple University Hospital was honored with an “I AM Patient Safety Award” from Pennsylvania’s Patient Safety Authority — the only winner in the “Conquering COVID” category and one of only 11 Pennsylvania facilities recognized for their achievements, outcomes and commitment to patient safety.

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