Carondelet St. Joseph’s Hospital and its Joint Replacement Center have accomplished something no other hospital in the United States has to date. All four total-joint replacement programs offered at St. Joseph’s—knee, hip, ankle and shoulderwere awarded the Gold Seal of Approval® by The Joint Commission, the nation’s oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care.

“As the prevalence of joint replacements grows along with our aging population, it is that much more important for patients to be confident in the safety and quality of the hospital they want overseeing their procedure and care,” said Dr. George Bradbury, an orthopedic surgeon with the Carondelet Joint Replacement Center and Chief of Staff at St. Joseph’s Hospital.

Added Dr. Edward Berghausen, medical co-director of the Joint Replacement Center, “Patients want to know not just that their surgeon is qualified, but that their care is safe. Wouldn’t you want to know your surgeon has one of the lowest rates of infection in the country? We’re putting our results out there for everyone to see.”

To earn certification, Carondelet St. Joseph’s underwent a rigorous on-site review, during which Joint Commission experts verified its commitment to:

  • Use evidence-based, standardized care designed for joint replacement patients, including those with other chronic conditions
  • Provide education about the procedure for patients and their families/caregivers
  • Collect and submit data regularly on patient outcomes

“Certification is a voluntary process and I commend St. Joseph’s Hospital for successfully undertaking the challenge to meet our criteria and, in receiving certifications, instill confidence in the Tucson and Southern Arizona community,” said Michele Sacco, M.S., interim executive director, Certification Programs.

“This accomplishment is well-earned and means something very special to the entire hospital staff and certainly to the patients and their families who place their trust in us,” said Tony Fonze, president and CEO of Carondelet St. Joseph’s Hospital.

The Carondelet Joint Replacement Center at St. Joseph’s Hospital opened in 2013, and is still the only program in Southern Arizona to offer inpatient pool therapy. Patients who have gone through the Joint Replacement Center experience outcomes that often exceed national averages, such as lower rates of infection and improved functional ability after surgery.