U.S. News Ranks Hackensack University Medical Center One of 50 Best Hospitals in Three Specialties

Nationally Ranked in Cancer, Cardiology & Heart Surgery, and Geriatrics

Jul 21, 2011, 11:26 ET from Hackensack University Medical Center

WASHINGTON, July 21, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Hackensack University Medical Center (HUMC) has been ranked among the top 50 hospitals nationally in three specialties – Cancer, Cardiology & Heart Surgery, and Geriatrics – in U.S. News Media & World Report's 2011-12 Best Hospitals rankings, available online at www.usnews.com/besthospitals. After years of focused efforts at becoming one of the most renowned places for cancer care in the country, this marks the first time the programs at HUMC's John Theurer Cancer Center have received national recognition as one of the top 50 hospitals in the U.S.

The rankings, annually published by U.S. News for the past 22 years, will also be featured in the U.S. News Best Hospitals guidebook, which will go on sale August 30. The latest rankings showcase 720 hospitals out of about 5,000 hospitals nationwide. Each is ranked among the country's top hospitals in at least one medical specialty and/or ranked among the best hospitals in its metro area.

"It is a tremendous achievement for HUMC to continuously find a place among these rankings as one of the nation's best," said Robert C. Garrett, president and chief executive officer at HUMC.  "This quality-based recognition gives peace of mind to our patients, who seek competency, compassion, and dependability from their healthcare providers. We take so much pride in upholding that responsibility."

The core mission of Best Hospitals is to help guide patients who need an especially high level of care because of a difficult surgery, a challenging condition, or added risk because of other health problems or age. "These are referral centers where other hospitals send their sickest patients," said Avery Comarow, U.S. News Health Rankings Editor. "Hospitals like these are ones you or those close to you should consider when the stakes are high."

Covering 94 metro areas in the U.S., the regional hospital rankings complement the national rankings by including hospitals with solid performance nearly at the level of nationally ranked institutions. HUMC has been ranked #7 overall in the New York Metro Area, and was recognized as a high-performer in the following specialties: Ear, Nose & Throat; Gastroenterology; Gynecology; Nephrology; Neurology & Neurosurgery; Orthopedics; Pulmonary and Urology.

The regional rankings are aimed primarily at consumers whose care may not demand the special expertise found only at a nationally ranked Best Hospital or who may not be willing or able to travel long distances for medical care. The U.S. News metro rankings give many such patients and their families more options of hospitals within their community and in their health insurance network.

"These are hospitals we call 'high performers.' They are fully capable of giving most patients first-rate care, even if they have serious conditions or need demanding procedures," Comarow said. "Almost every major metro area has at least one of these hospitals."

Hard numbers stand behind the rankings in most specialties—death rates, patient safety, procedure volume, and other objective data. Responses to a national survey, in which physicians were asked to name hospitals they consider best in their specialty for the toughest cases, also were factored in.

The rankings cover 16 medical specialties and all 94 metro areas that have at least 500,000 residents and at least one hospital that performed well enough to be ranked.

SOURCE Hackensack University Medical Center