US News & World Report Ranks Four URMC Specialties Among Nation’s Best

July 19, 2011

Steady improvements in quality have driven four University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) programs onto US News & World Report’s list of the “2011-12 Best Hospitals in America.”  The new rankings, released today by the magazine, mark the first time that four URMC programs have earned a spot in the Top 50 since the rankings began in 1989.

Included among URMC’s national list are:

  • Gynecology, which is rated as the #32 best;
  • Urology at URMC entered the list at #39 best;
  • Nephrology (Kidney Disorders) scored at #42;
  • Neurology and Neurosurgery, which are ranked together, landed on the list at #48. 

URMC and Roswell Park Cancer Institute are the only upstate New York hospitals with programs scored in the Top 50.  

In addition to the four nationally ranked programs, eight URMC specialties were listed as “top performing” programs, meaning that their scores were nearly at the level of the nationally ranked, Top 50 programs.  These programs include cancer, cardiology and heart surgery, diabetes and endocrinology, ear, nose, and throat, gastroenterology, geriatrics, orthopaedics, and pulmonology.  Today’s regional rankings represent an update of those released in March when the magazine debuted its “Best Regional Hospitals” rankings. 

“These new US News rankings reflect the efforts of our physicians, staff, and leadership to provide outstanding care to our patients,” said URMC CEO Bradford C. Berk, M.D., Ph.D.   “Our focus on continuous improvement and better outcomes has enabled these programs to markedly increase their overall US News scores since 2008.” 

In 2007, URMC launched a comprehensive Strategic Plan that made high-quality, safe patient care URMC’s leading clinical goal.   Since then, URMC has instituted hospital-wide efforts to reduce infection rates, improve communication among members of care teams, and involve family members more closely in patient care decisions. 

For the last 22 years, the magazine’s “America’s Best Hospitals” issue has used a variety of statistical and reputational measures including survival rates, patient safety scores, volume and reputation, to select the top 50 hospitals in each of 16 medical specialties.  In 2007, the magazine also began to rank children’s hospitals in both general pediatrics and ten subspecialties.  In May, the magazine scored three URMC pediatric subspecialties – orthopaedics, neurology and neurosurgery, and neonatology within the Golisano Children’s Hospital – in its “Best Children’s Hospitals” issue. 

Of the more than 5,000 hospitals in the U.S., only 140 were considered of high enough quality to be ranked in even a single specialty.

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