Kenmore Mercy Hospital Receives Spine Surgery and Knee and Hip Replacement Designation from Blue Cross and Blue Shield

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September 13, 2010

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Western New York has designated Kenmore Mercy Hospital as a Blue Distinction Center for Spine Surgery℠ and as a Blue Distinction Center for Knee and Hip Replacement℠. Blue Distinction Centers for Knee and Hip Replacement are part of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association’s expansion of its Blue Distinction® designation.

“This designation reflects the hospital’s commitment to providing quality surgical treatment and innovative technology that is necessary to stay at the forefront of joint and spine treatment,” said James Millard, Kenmore Mercy Hospital President & CEO. “Our spine surgery and knee and hip replacement programs are among the best, thanks to the skill of our surgeons and the expertise of the entire surgical, nursing and medical rehabilitation teams.”

Renowned for producing outstanding results, Kenmore Mercy’s knee & hip and spine surgery teams are led by Marcus Romanowski, MD, Director of the Knee & Hip Center and Chief of Orthopedic Surgery, and Michael K. Landi, MD, FACS, Chief of Neurological Surgery.

A HealthGrades five-star rated hospital for joint replacement, Kenmore Mercy offers comprehensive knee and hip replacement services, including pre-surgery patient education classes, preoperative testing, and a dedicated Knee & Hip Center. In addition, depending on the patient’s needs, Kenmore Mercy offers a nationally-ranked medical rehabilitation unit in the hospital and outpatient AthletiCare rehabilitation services. The physicians, nurses, therapists and staff have received specialized training to provide comprehensive care to encourage the best outcomes.

In addition, Kenmore Mercy is the only hospital in Western New York that regularly uses MAKO computer-assisted knee replacement technology, which enables surgeons remove the damaged portion of the knee while preserving healthy bone and surrounding tissue. The technology is modeled after the unicondylar (partial knee) resurfacing operation invented by Kenmore Mercy’s own John Repicci, DDS, MD.

The selection criteria used to evaluate facilities were developed with input from a panel of expert physicians. To be designated as a Blue Distinction Center for Spine Surgery℠ and as a Blue Distinction Center for Knee and Hip Replacement℠, the following types of criteria were evaluated:

  • Established acute care inpatient facility, including intensive care, emergency care, and a full range of patient support services with full accreditation by a Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services-deemed national accreditation organization
  • Experience and training of program surgeons, including case volume
  • Quality management programs, including tracking and evaluation of clinical outcomes and processes of care
  • Multi-disciplinary clinical pathways and teams to coordinate and streamline care, including transitions of care
  • Shared decision making and preoperative patient education

More information on selection criteria is available at

The Blue Distinction designation is awarded by the Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies to medical facilities that have demonstrated expertise in delivering quality healthcare in the areas of bariatric surgery, cardiac care, complex and rare cancers, knee and hip replacement, spine surgery and transplants. The program is part of The Blues® efforts to collaborate with physicians and medical facilities to improve the overall quality and safety of specialty care.