Racial, Ethnic, and Payer Disparities in Adverse Safety Events: Are there Differences across Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grades?

The Leapfrog Group worked with the Urban Institute to compare the rate of a defined set of dangerous, preventable patient safety problems, including dangerous blood clots or sepsis after surgery, among white, Black, and Hispanic patients at hospitals that earned Hospital Safety Grades of “A,” “B,” and lower. The analysis included 2019 hospital discharge records from 15 states and over 10 million patients. The study found that while higher-graded hospitals were safer for all patients, Black and Hispanic patients experience higher rates of many adverse surgery-related safety events relative to white patients across all Safety Grades (“A” hospitals, “B” hospitals, and “C/D/F” hospitals).


  • Anuj Gangopadhyaya, Urban Institute
  • Avani Pugazhendhi, Urban Institute
  • Matt Austin, Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality
  • Alexandra Campione, The Leapfrog Group
  • Missy Danforth, The Leapfrog Group

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