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Sutter Davis Hospital’s Road to Winning the Malcolm Baldrige Award

The Malcolm Baldrige Award is a national accolade given to organizations in the United States to recognize their outstanding excellence in their field of specialization. The sectors considered for this award include service, manufacturing, nonprofit, business, transportation, education, and health care (Brown, 2017). The President of the United States gives the award to formally recognize those public and private establishments within the U.S. that have shown brilliance in their performance. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) manages the program under the U.S. Department of Commerce’s patronage. Several different businesses have won the award since its inception in 1988. This award’s framework is based on scoring guidelines, operational excellence criteria, and core values and concepts (Brown, 2017). The program identifies exemplary companies for the award to serve as the benchmark for others and helps all the organizations in many ways. In particular, it helps them identify their strengths and weaknesses, troubleshoot their performance management systems, and assess their endeavors to improve their production or service delivery. In 2013, Sutter Davis Hospital rightfully won this award for its unmatched brilliance in the health sector.

Background of Sutter Davis Hospital

Sutter Davis Hospital (SDH) is a not-for-profit healthcare organization located in Davis, California. It provides birthing, intensive care, medical-surgical, surgical, and emergency care services using technologically advanced approaches. The only acute care facility in Davis City is Sutter Davis Hospital, and in the whole county, it is one of the only two (National Institute of Standards and Technology [NIST], 2019). The healthcare facility operates in partnership with Davis farmers market and as an affiliate of Sutter Medical Group. As of December 2020, the hospital had 394 medical staff members, 385 non-medical employees, and 100 volunteers, and in 2012, SDH’s total revenue was almost $95 million (NIST, 2019). In 2013, when this hospital won the Malcolm Baldrige Award, the Chief Executive Officer was Janet Wagner, and she was the highest-ranking official then.

Top-Level Performance Leading to the Award in 2013

Since 2010, Sutter Davis Hospital has been ranked top 10 nationally in performance scores in congestive heart failure, pneumonia, and acute myocardial infarction. Also, the organization exceeded the national top 10% for an average length of stay and readmission rates in the aforementioned specific patient groups and achieved a similar feat for overall inpatient care and Medicare (NIST, 2019). Additionally, Sutter Davis Hospital demonstrated high-level excellence in process efficiency and work. For example, since 2008, there has been a decrease in the hospital’s door-to-doctor time from 45 to 22 minutes in the emergency room in early 2013, which was way below California’s average of 58 minutes (NIST, 2019). This milestone was one of the factors for the hospital to be recognized for the Malcolm Baldrige Award.

Sutter Davis Hospital’s primary focus is on people, which the employee satisfaction and engagement indicators reflect; these scores exceeded the national average in 2013. Senior leaders of the organization are dedicated to safe patient care as a part of SDH’s culture of caring (NIST, 2019). The hospital delivers a consistent, progressive patient experience through the accountability framework envisioned in its annual objectives and action plans. For these reasons, Sutter Davis Hospital is considered the most preferred place to practice medicine and work, evidenced by its strong clinical quality outcomes and ratings. Between 2010 and 2013, there was a sustained physician satisfaction trend, increasing from 80% to 90% over that period (NIST, 2019). Workforce climate indicators reflect an exceeding expectation performance in the targeted goals. Starting in 2008 until 2012, Sutter Davis Hospital workers consistently rated employee health, security, and safety at 100%, as reflected in the hospital’s annual safety surveys during that period (NIST, 2019). This was another fundamental reason the organization won this award in 2013.

Another key indicator that contributed to Sutter Davis Hospital’s winning the Malcolm Baldrige Award is its mission of ensuring the well-being of its community. The hospital has fulfilled its corporate social responsibility of improving the health of the community it serves. Between 2009 and 2012, the Yolo Children’s Alliance Health Initiative doubled the number of children it had initially, courtesy of Sutter Davis Hospital’s dedication to providing medical care for children (NIST, 2019). Over the years, Sutter Davis Hospital has maintained its commitment to caring for all patients, for example, through its partnership with CommuniCare. This initiative has made it possible for medically indigent populations to access medical care. Moreover, SDH’s fiscal health has been good, which has guaranteed the provision of quality health services. Lastly, the hospital offers ethics education and training for its entire staff to ensure they meet the organization’s ethical expectations, and it has zero-tolerance policies for ethical breaches among its workforce.

In conclusion, the Malcolm Baldrige Award is a prestigious honor given to those organizations demonstrating exemplary excellence in their operation area, regardless of whether it is in the public or private sector. Sutter Davis Hospital is one of the winners, claiming the award in 2013 for meeting the excellent performance criteria in the health care sector. This dedication to serving all people is envisioned in the organization’s mission. The employees also feel valued by their organization, and the hospital ensures its workforce meets its ethical expectations by providing them an ethics education and training. Owing to these key performance indicators, SDH was a worthy winner of this coveted award in 2013.


Brown, M. G. (2017). Baldrige award winning quality: How to interpret the Baldrige criteria for performance excellence. Boca Raton: CRC Press.

National Institute of Standards and Technology. (2019). Sutter Davis Hospital: Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award 2013 award recipient, health care. Web.

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"Sutter Davis Hospital’s Road to Winning the Malcolm Baldrige Award." StudyKraken, 19 Aug. 2022,

1. StudyKraken. "Sutter Davis Hospital’s Road to Winning the Malcolm Baldrige Award." August 19, 2022.


StudyKraken. "Sutter Davis Hospital’s Road to Winning the Malcolm Baldrige Award." August 19, 2022.


StudyKraken. 2022. "Sutter Davis Hospital’s Road to Winning the Malcolm Baldrige Award." August 19, 2022.


StudyKraken. (2022) 'Sutter Davis Hospital’s Road to Winning the Malcolm Baldrige Award'. 19 August.

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