Roper St. Francis Healthcare

  • Location: Charleston, SC
  • Award: Evidence-Based Leadership Healthcare Organization of the Month
  • Awarded: May 2010

Roper St. Francis Healthcare's mission is simple: Healing all people with compassion, faith and excellence.

Known for giving exceptional care with a personal touch, Roper St. Francis Healthcare is the only private, not-for-profit health care system in South Carolina's coastal Lowcountry region. The 657-bed system comprises 90 facilities and services in seven counties. Anchor hospitals are Roper Hospital and Bon Secours St. Francis Hospital, and a new 85 Bed Mt. Pleasant Hospital scheduled open in November of 2010. With more than 4,800 employees, Roper St. Francis is Charleston's largest nongovernmental, private employer.

Roper Hospital was founded in 1850 as the first community hospital in the Carolinas. Bon Secours St. Francis Hospital first opened in 1882 as St. Francis Xavier Infirmary, the first Catholic hospital in South Carolina. In 1998, Roper and Bon Secours St. Francis hospitals came together to form Roper St. Francis Healthcare.

In the fall of 2005, Roper St. Francis Healthcare partnered with the Studer Group. Employees, staff and board members, eagerly embraced the Studer Group's evidence-based leadership model.

The Studer Group strengthened efforts already in place to ensure consistency of care and services. Leadership Development Institutes accelerated the integration of two very different and independent hospital cultures. Our ongoing Journey to Excellence has become ingrained with a common language of the five pillars: People, Quality, Financial, Growth and Service. Following is our record of achievement by Pillar.


Perceptions of RSFH as a Place to Practice, Work and Be Treated Among Physicians, Employees and Inpatients


  • Physician Satisfaction: RSFH has maintained top decile performance over the last two years as an excellent place to practice medicine.
  • Employee Satisfaction: RSFH has maintained top decile performance over the last three years for employees rating the system as an excellent place to work. In 2009, RSFH reached the national 99th percentile ranking.
  • Patient Satisfaction: RSFH has received many national awards each year for performance in inpatient, outpatient, outpatient surgery, home health, rehabilitation, physician office, cancer center and emergency room patient satisfaction. Over the last five years, RSFH has maintained top quartile performance in patient satisfaction, reaching the top decile in 2008-09.
  • In 2008, RSFH received the Professional Research Consultants' President's Award, presented to recognize the single organization believed to be acting progressively in its journey to excellence.
  • RSFH was voted "Best Place to Work" from 2007 to 2010 by readers of Charleston City Paper, a local, weekly publication.


  • Through focused system-wide quality initiatives from 2006-09, RSFH has:
    • reduced hospital-acquired infections by 38%
    • reduced patient falls by 19%
    • increased overall appropriateness of care for acute myocardial infarction, heart failure, pneumonia and surgical care core measure patients by 15%
  • RSFH's success stands out in the 2007-08 HCAHPS survey. With more than 3,500 hospitals reporting, both anchor hospitals, St. Francis and Roper, scored above the 90th percentile for patients who gave a rating of 9 or 10 (high) and would definitely recommend the hospitals.
  • In 2009, RSFH received 71 National Excellence in Health Care Awards from Professional Research Consultants, recognizing exemplary performances throughout our health care system.
  • In 2009, St. Francis Hospital earned the BlueCross BlueShield National Association Blue Distinction Center designation for Spine Surgery, and Roper Hospital received the designation for Knee and Hip Replacement.
  • RSFH has ranked in the top 50 of Modern Healthcare's Top 100 Integrated Health Networks for two consecutive years, 2009-10.
  • Both Roper and St. Francis hospitals achieved patient safety culture survey results that were favorable to Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) benchmarks for comparable bed-sized peer groups as well as AHRQ's overall comparative database for all twelve survey domains in 2008 and 2009, with eight out of twelve domains for St. Francis and four out of twelve domains for Roper also favorable to AHRQ's top decile performance.


  • Operating cash flow margin of 11.1% for fiscal 2009 compared favorably to the Moody's A-rated median of 9.1%.
  • For fiscal 2009, labor and supply expenses were at benchmark levels with labor expense as a percent of total revenue at 41.8% and supply expense as a percent of total revenue at 16.6%.
  • As the Charleston region's market share leader, RSFH facilities and physicians are vital to the success of managed care payor networks. For more than five years, all Roper St. Francis facilities have been participating providers with all major managed care payors. Currently, more than 99% of all Charleston area commercially insured individuals have in-network access to Roper St. Francis facilities and Roper St. Francis Physician Partner physicians.


  • RSFH has nearly completed its 85-bed Mount Pleasant Hospital.
  • The 76,000-square-foot West Ashley Cancer Center is expected to open in fall 2010.
  • Roper St. Francis Physician Partners more than tripled in size in 2009, gaining 30 percent of the region's primary care market.
  • In 2009, Roper Hospital Ambulatory Surgery and Pain Management on James Island, a new 17,000-square-foot facility, opened.
  • An additional 20-bed Roper Rehabilitation Hospital unit opened in 2009.
  • Bon Secours St. Francis Hospital Expansion was completed in 2008, increasing licensed beds from 144 to 204.
  • Roper Hospital's Heart & Vascular Tower was completed in 2006, increasing heart and vascular volumes by 20.1%.


  • In 2009, RSFH employees donated 58,105 hours of staff time supporting community and health related initiatives and serving 174,602 community residents.
  • RSFH sponsored approximately 400 community health fairs and participated in 85 requested community health fairs and screenings.
  • In 2009, RSFH sponsorship of community programs totaled $545,916.
  • Charity care (at cost) in 2009 totaled $14,750,789.
  • RSFH employees broke a Trident United Way fundraising record in 2009 by donating a total of $452,549.98 with 175 leadership givers.
  • RSFH launched a global outreach in 2009 called Mission H2O. Employees raised more than $33,000 to bring clean, safe water to a hospital and community in Kenya.
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