King’s Daughters Medical Center

  • Location: Brookhaven, MS
  • Award: Rural Healthcare Organization of the Month
  • Awarded: November 2014

King’s Daughters Medical Center, managed by Quorum Health Resources, is a 122 bed acute care hospital. We are located in Brookhaven MS, also known as the Homeseeker’s Paradise. Our hospital has been completely renovated, and our equipment and facilities are up to date. We celebrated 100 years of service to our community in October 2014.

Our mission is to provide quality health and wellness in a Christian environment. Our goal is to be the healthcare provider and the healthcare employer of choice for southwest Mississippi.

In its April 7, 2008 issue, Modern Healthcare reported KDMC had the second highest HCAHPS score in the country. We were so proud, but we really had no idea how we scored so well.

We began using Quint Studer’s book, Hardwiring Excellence, to guide our efforts to improve performance. We saw marked improvement in our quality and in our ability to use our PI projects to drive improvement.

Our use of the principles in Hardwiring Excellence was haphazard and inconsistent, and unfortunately, by 2011 even though we had a better PI process, our HCAHPS scores dropped to the 70th percentile. We found that we really had not hardwired our processes, and that we did not understand the “how or why” to improve our HCAHPS.

That year we began our Great PI adventure. This is a three hour educational program we require for each employee that helps them understand the “how and why” of measuring, benchmarking and using best practices. Typically led by the CEO, we put groups of 15-20 employees from various departments together for a set of teambuilding challenges that teach them about team dynamics, individual value verses team value, efficiency and effectiveness, listening, safety, and managing change. More than 800 staff have received this training since 2011. We consider it foundational to performance improvement at KDMC.

At the same time we established an HCAHPS team to develop and drive a strategy to improve our HCAHPS scores. By using scripting, one hour rounding on patients, and rounding on staff we saw our HCAHPS scores improve. By 2013 we had four of eight criteria at the 90th percentile or better, and a positive Value Based Purchasing score.

Still, we found ourselves doing PI projects on things we had previously corrected. Our processes were not hardwired. In April 2013 we contracted directly with the Studer Group to close our gaps in performance. Our coach helped us establish the LEM; we began AIDET in earnest; we formalized our rounding process – it includes rounding on patients, rounding on our direct reports, and rounding on other departments. Our coach holds us accountable to measure all of these.

Our journey for excellence became known as Destination ALWAYS because we always want to do the right thing. We ALWAYS want to control your pain, we ALWAYS want to wash our hands, we ALWAYS want to make a bottom line. We know that ALWAYS for HCAHPS means a score of 9 or 10. The best way to earn those scores is to ALWAYS do the right thing and ALWAYS get it right.

At the end of September we have eight of eight criteria at the 90th percentile for HCAHPS. This is a concurrent measure, not yet reported publicly. We achieved another positive VBP score. We have one discharge process throughout the hospital. One nurse recently interviewed exclaimed, “You have one discharge process! At my hospital each discharge is like opening a new zoo!”

We have incorporated HSL conversations with 75% of our workforce, and will have the other 25% of the process completed in our new fiscal year. Our Avatar Employee Engagement and Employee Satisfaction scores are both best in class at the 95th percentile.

We were good before we contracted with the Studer Group. But we knew healthcare reform was going to make our jobs tougher. Now our processes are getting hardwired, and we are better because of the Studer Group’s coaching.


Modern Healthcare

  • 2014 Best Places to Work
  • 2013 Best Places to Work
  • 2012 Best Places to Work


  • 2014 Outstanding Patient Experience
  • 2013 Outstanding Patient Experience
  • 2012 Outstanding Patient Experience
  • 2010/2011 Outstanding Patient Experience

Women’s Choice

  • 2014 America’s 100 Best Hospitals for Patient Experience
  • 2014 America’s Best Hospitals for Patient Experience in Obstetrics
  • 2014 America’s Best Hospitals for Patient Experience in Emergency Care
  • 2013 America’s 100 Best Hospitals for Patient Experience
  • 2013 America’s Best Hospitals for Patient Experience in Obstetrics


  • 2014 Best in Class for Employee Engagement
  • 2014 Best in Class for Employee Satisfaction
  • 2012 Most Improved for Employee Opinion Survey
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