For Immediate Release February 07, 2021

The University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center has been named the recipient of the 2021 Minogue Award for Patient Safety Innovation by the Maryland Patient Safety Center. The Medical Center's first-place submission was entitled "UM St. Joseph's Value Delivery System."

In 2015, following an adverse event, University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center (UM St. Joseph) began a journey to transform the hospital's approach to patient safety and continuous quality improvement. "One patient harmed is one too many," said Thomas B. Smyth, MD, President and CEO of the medical center, "and the stunning realization that we were responsible for a breach in patient care—and in our role as trusted stewards of our community's health—served as our burning platform for immediate change to ensure zero patient harm and safe, standardized care at every touchpoint."

As a result, UM St. Joseph partnered with the renowned Virginia Mason Institute (VMI) which offers an innovative approach to patient safety and organizational change based on the Toyota Production System. This approach is collaborative, engaging at every level and completely focused on providing consistently safe and high-quality care and a work environment driven by employees, all of whom are encouraged to "stop the line" whenever safety is a concern.

The result, after three years of partnership with VMI, was the creation of UM St. Joseph's Value Delivery System (VDS). "Our Value Delivery System is our promise to our patients, our community and each other that UM St. Joseph has created a Culture of Safety that keeps zero patient harm at top-of-mind for every staff member," said Dr. Smyth.

Since the implementation of the Value Delivery System, UM St. Joseph -- which is rated the state's #1 community hospital by U.S. News & World Report and has consistently earned top grades by The Leapfrog Group for patient safety -- has seen significant improvements in its Patient Harm Index, patient experience ratings, employee injury statistics and operating margins.

"Our all-team focus on standardizing our work and using our Value Delivery System, has enabled us to remove waste and increase efficiency. These successes are allowing our staff to spend more time with patients, enhancing the patient experience and driving patient safety and clinical outcomes to new heights, with the ultimate goal of achieving Zero Patient Harm and the Perfect Patient Experience," said Dr. Smyth.

University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center was one of ten hospitals throughout Maryland recognized for their top safety and quality solutions in healthcare. The honorees were selected by a panel of independent judges who are leaders in the Maryland health care community. University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center will present their solution at the 17th Annual Maryland Patient Safety Conference, being held virtually on April 29, 2021.

"With over 50 submissions to choose from, we know that health care organizations here in Maryland are some of the most forward thinking throughout the country," said Blair Eig, MD, President and CEO of the Maryland Patient Safety Center. "We are proud to recognize all participants for their attention, innovation, and commitment to addressing some of the most pertinent and complex issues penetrating patient safety today. Congratulations to our top awardee, UM St. Joseph Medical Center, and to all of those recognized for their successful contributions to our mission and for keeping Maryland healthcare safe."

Named for the Center's first President and Executive Director, William Minogue, MD, FACP, to honor his enduring contributions to and passion for improving patient care and safety, The Minogue Awards were created by the Center Board of Directors to recognize organizations within the state that have made a demonstrable difference in patient safety through an innovative solution.

About UM St. Joseph Medical Center

UM St. Joseph Medical Center (UM SJMC), founded in 1864 by the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia, is a 218-bed Catholic, not-for-profit regional medical center in Towson, Maryland. A member of the 13-hospital University of Maryland Medical System, UM SJMC is located in suburban Baltimore County, and offers a wide range of superb clinical programs and centers of excellence, including the Cancer, Heart and Orthopaedic Institutes, Women and Children's services and Emergency Medicine. Our mission: To provide loving service and compassionate, leading-edge care to all. For more information, visit

About the Maryland Patient Safety Center

The Maryland Patient Safety Center brings together health care organizations and providers to improve patient safety and health care quality for all Marylanders. The goal of the Center is to make healthcare in Maryland the safest in the nation by focusing on the systems of care, reducing the occurrence of adverse events and improving the culture of patient safety at Maryland health care facilities. For more information, visit