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U.S. News Ranks Barnes-Jewish Hospital No. 8 in Nation;Number 17 in Cancer Care

Jason Merrill

July 7, 2007 – With an overall ranking of No. 8 in the nation, Barnes-Jewish Hospital and their physician partners at Washington University School of Medicine are the only St. Louis area hospital and medical institution listed among America’s elite medical centers in the U.S.News & World Report "America’s Best Hospitals" issue. Barnes-Jewish earned honors for the 14th consecutive year as part of the newsmagazine’s "Honor Roll," while ranking in 14 individual specialties.

In the cancer specialty category, the Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine was listed as No. 17, up from a No. 19 ranking last year.

Barnes-Jewish is the only hospital ranked in the top 10 within a 500-mile radius of St. Louis. In fact, not only did Barnes-Jewish rank among the top 10 in 7 of 16 rated medical specialties, but the hospital also is the only St. Louis hospital for adults to rank in any category.

The standards used to rank "America's Best Hospital's" are rigorous. Of 5,189 U.S. hospitals, only 3 percent – 176 in all – have ranked specialties, and only hospitals earning high marks in six or more of 16 select specialties made the "Honor Roll" of America’s best hospitals. Overall, only 14 hospitals made the "Honor Roll," a list reserved for medical centers with very high rankings in at least six specialties.

By individual specialty, Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine rankings are:

  • Endocrinology — 5
  • Ear, nose & throat — 6
  • Kidney disease — 7
  • Neurology & neurosurgery — 8
  • Respiratory disorders — 8
  • Urology — 8
  • Heart & heart surgery — 10
  • Ophthalmology — 11
  • Orthopaedics — 11
  • Digestive disorders — 14
  • Psychiatry — 14
  • Rheumatology — 16
  • Cancer — 17
  • Gynecology — 23

The 2006 guide to "America's Best Hospital's" appears in the July 17 issue of the national newsmagazine, which hits newsstands July 10.

"The U.S.News ‘Honor Roll’ is a tribute to the strength of the Washington University School of Medicine faculty and our staff’s partnership with them to provide excellent care. Together we make an incredible team," says Andy Ziskind, MD, Barnes-Jewish Hospital president. "Our combined expertise and commitment is why the hospital remains a leader in medical advancements and a model of exceptional patient care and safety. This skill allows our patients the opportunity to look forward to better, healthier lives."

The current "America’s Best Hospital’s" methodology was devised in 1993 at the University of Chicago. The 2006 rankings were produced by RTI international in Triangle Park, NC. Hospitals had to meet a series of progressively tougher standards to be ranked. To be considered at all, a hospital had to satisfy at least one of three requirements: membership in the Council of Teaching Hospitals, medical school affiliation, or availability of at least 9 out of 18 key technology-related services. From there, hospitals were ranked based on three elements: reputation, death rate and such care-related factors as nursing and patient services.

For the third year a hospital’s Magnet status affected its standing. Barnes-Jewish Hospital became St. Louis’ first Magnet Hospital in 2003 from the American Nurses Credentialing Center, formally recognizing the hospital as meeting high standards of nursing excellence.

Five specialty areas – ophthalmology, pediatrics, psychiatry, rehabilitation and rheumatology – were ranked by reputation only. For the remaining 11 specialties – cancer; heart and heart surgery; digestive disorders; ear, nose and throat; gynecology; hormonal disorders; kidney disease; neurology and neurosurgery; orthopedics; respiratory disorders; and urology – U.S.News combined each hospital's reputation ranking with quantitative medical data to determine the final scores. Geriatrics was dropped as a specialty this year, because it is oriented more to primary care than to specialized hospital treatment.

"Our employees at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and our colleagues at Washington University School of Medicine are deservedly proud of their world-class reputation," says Steven H. Lipstein, BJC HealthCare president and chief executive officer. "Their accomplishments reflect positively on BJC HealthCare, our hospitals and the City of St. Louis."

Barnes-Jewish Hospital is a member of BJC HealthCare, which provides a full range of health care services through its 12 hospitals and more than 100 health care sites in Missouri and Illinois. Barnes-Jewish Hospital also is affiliated with Washington University School of Medicine, ranked as the nation’s number four medical school by U.S.News & World Report.

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