Petaluma Valley Hospital is among nine greater Bay Area hospitals and one of 405 national hospitals to be named a top performer on key clinical measures by The Joint Commission, the national accreditation organization of acute care hospitals and health care organizations.

The 80-bed facility, a district hospital operated by St. Joseph Health System, was the only North Bay hospital to receive the distinction. The Joint Commission recognized Petaluma Valley based on clinical processes that are shown to improve care for conditions such as heart attacks, pneumonia and surgical care, according to the health system.

Inclusion on the list is based on an aggregation of accountability measure performance data submitted to The Joint Commission during calendar year 2010.

Jane Read, vice president of operations at Petaluma Valley, attributed the recognition to the hospital's employees and medical staff.

"This is a reflection of their care, compassion, skill and knowledge in how to best manage patients treatment," Read said. "I'm really proud to be part of a hospital team that has such high standards, and that is now being recognized for top performance outcomes that demonstrate the quality of care our patients receive."

Dr. Clyde Wesp, chief medical informatics officer for St. Joseph Health System, said, "This is a great honor and embodies our core strategic goal to deliver perfect care."

The other Bay Area hospitals include:

; Eden Medical Center in Castro Valley

; Washington Hospital Healthcare System of Fremont

; Kaiser Permanente's Hayward/Fremont Medical Center and South San Francisco Medical Center

; Alameda County Medical Center of Oakland

; Sutter Health's California Pacific Medical Center and St. Luke's Hospital in San Francisco and Sutter Maternity & Surgery Center in Santa Cruz

; Good Samaritan Hospital of San Jose

"Today, the public expects transparency in the reporting of performance at the hospitals where they receive care, and The Joint Commission is shining a light on the top-performing hospitals such as Petaluma Valley Hospital," said Mark Chassin, M.D., president of The Joint Commission.

A hospital must surpass two 95 percent performance thresholds to be recognized.

— Dan Verel, North Bay Business Journal