UCSF Medical Center Named to U.S. News 'Best Hospital' List

July 08, 2005
News Office: Carol Hyman (415) 502-6397

UCSF Medical Center and UCSF Children's Hospital have been named to the honor roll of U.S. News & World Report's special issue on "America's Best Hospitals," with the medical center at No. 10 and the children's hospital at No. 17.

In this annual survey, U.S. News reviewed more than 6,000 hospitals, paring the list to fewer than 200 medical centers that could be considered "the best of the best."

Results of the magazine's 16th annual survey are in the July 18 issue and on the web at www.usnews.com.

According to U.S. News, the honor roll hospitals are ". . . an elite group. Just 176 hospitals scored high enough this year to rank in even a single specialty out of all 6,007 U.S. medical centers (excluding military and veterans' hospitals; the federal government will not provide the necessary data). And only 16 made the honor roll, reserved for medical centers ranked at or near the top in at least six specialties."

Mark Laret, CEO of UCSF Medical Center, said, "We are pleased to once again be included on a list of the very best medical centers in the nation. Being the best takes a combination of cutting edge research, skilled surgeons and diagnosticians, and the finest, most compassionate nursing and support staff available, and UCSF has all of these qualities and so much more, including treatments, such as our innovative spine surgery, not available anywhere else in the world."

"Around the world, UCSF is known for its excellence," Laret said. "This excellence has not only won us awards, but perhaps more important, it has won us the trust and respect of thousands who have been treated by our outstanding faculty and staff."

The U.S. News ranking comes during a time of several milestone developments for UCSF:

  • Recognizing UCSF Medical Center's exceptional efforts to foster better outcomes in stroke care, the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) recently certified the hospital as a Primary Stroke Center. UCSF is the first hospital in San Francisco to receive this designation.
  • UCSF neurologists and neurosurgeons are conducting a gene therapy trial for patients suffering from Parkinson's disease. In the procedure, brain cells are infused with a virus containing the DNA of a special enzyme. The goal of the trial is to have brain cells produce more of this enzyme used by the brain to convert l-dopa to dopamine, which relieves symptoms of the disease. The first patient has been successfully treated, with several more patients scheduled in the near future.
  • Pioneers in fetal surgery, UCSF Children's Hospital has launched a comprehensive fetal surgery Web site. Parents-to-be can learn about prenatal diagnoses and treatments and get information from the foremost experts in this field.
  • The UCSF Cancer Risk Program has expanded its genetics services with a novel Medical Genomics Clinic, designed to serve families who have a family history of multiple malignancies and congenital anomalies. The recognition of a family with a cancer syndrome is important for several reasons, including the initiation of cancer surveillance, identification of relatives at increased cancer risk, and recurrence-risk counseling for the family.
  • UCSF Medical Center has embarked on an ambitious plan to build a cancer, women's and children's hospital alongside its research facilities at Mission Bay. This new hospital will be in addition to the facilities at its Parnassus campus.

The "America's Best Hospitals" methodology is based on a series of factors, including a survey of more than 8,000 doctors. The methodology was devised in 1993 by the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago, which has carried out and refined the analysis ever since.

Another decisive factor for hospitals included in the U.S. News rankings is affiliation with an academic medical institution. UCSF's strength at translating basic research into clinical care has made it a leader in the discovery and application of groundbreaking treatments for rare and complicated diseases and conditions.

"UCSF's effect reaches far beyond our medical center and university," Laret said. "From training some of the most innovative researchers and clinical physicians working in medical centers and labs worldwide, to patients traveling many miles to our medical center for the most up-to-date care, the UCSF name has come to stand for the very best in health care practice."

Hospitals on the U.S. News & World Report honor roll are:

  1. Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore
  2. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn.
  3. Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston
  4. Cleveland Clinic
  5. UCLA Medical Center, Los Angeles
  6. Barnes-Jewish Hospital/Washington University, St. Louis
  7. New York-Presbyterian University Hospital of Columbia and Cornell
  8. Duke University Medical Center, Durham, N.C.
  9. University of Washington Medical Center, Seattle
  10. UCSF Medical Center, San Francisco
  11. University of Michigan Medical Center, Ann Arbor
  12. Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston
  13. University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
  14. University of Chicago Hospitals
  15. Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
  16. Stanford Hospital and Clinics, Stanford, Calif.

Several of UCSF's programs were also rated among the top 15 in the nation. These include: