July 15, 2008

America’s Best Hospitals

For the 18th consecutive time, The Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore was placed at the top in the list of ‘America’s Best Hospitals’ released by the U.S. News & World Report.

The survey conducted by Massachusetts Health Quality Partners, included 51,000 adult patients and 20,000 parents of pediatric patients. The results were prepared by compiling the data from the American Hospital Association and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Information from all sources was collected and analyzed on behalf of US News by RTI International, a Research Triangle Park nonprofit.

Reputation, death rate and handling of difficult situations were some of the factors considered while judging the hospitals.

The routine procedures were not given much credit but analysts questioned the doctors, medical staff and their ability to handle patients and their queries on their ailments and necessary treatments.

Only one-third of the U.S. hospitals were considered for the list, since the qualification criterion required the institutes to either be affiliated with a medical school, a member of the Council of Teaching Hospitals or employ at least six of 13 key technologies such as robotic surgery.

The research firm studied data on 5,453 medical centers to come up with the specialty rankings. Only 170 hospitals were ranked in one or more specialties and just 19 of those made it to the ‘honor roll’ status, which signifies hospitals that scored at or near the top in at least six of the list’s 16 specialties.

The Methodist Hospital in Houston was placed in 12 medical specialties, and St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital, was placed in eight.

Last year The Methodist was placed in 14 of 16 specialties and St. Luke's got nine.
"This achievement is a tribute to our physicians and employees whose talents, dedication and compassion make Methodist one of the best hospitals in the country," said Ron Girotto, CEO and president of The Methodist Hospital System.

St. Luke's made it to the top 10 list for heart surgery for the 18th consecutive year.

Overall, pediatricians got the best appraisal from the classicization since 95 percent parents were happy about communication compared to the 90 percent of adult patients.

Communication played significant role in patients’ care, and more than 80 percent of the patients said their own doctors gave them clear explanations.

Hospitals that made it to the ‘Honor-roll’ are:
• Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore
• Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn.
• Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, Los Angeles
• Cleveland Clinic
• Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston
• New York-Presbyterian University Hospitals of Columbia and Cornell
• University of California, San Francisco Medical Center
• Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston and Duke University Medical Center, Durham, N.C.
• Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia and University of Washington Medical Center, Seattle
• Barnes-Jewish Hospital/Washington University, St. Louis
• University of Michigan Hospitals and Health Centers, Ann Arbor
• UPMC-University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
• Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville
• Stanford Hospital and Clinics, Stanford, Calif.
• University of Chicago Medical Center
• Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles
• Yale-New Haven Hospital, New Haven, Conn.

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