U.S. News Reveals Best Hospitals, Massachusetts General Tops List

U.S. News has revealed its list of the best hospitals across the nation, with Massachusetts General taking the top spot from Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. The latest list signifies the end of a 21-year reign at No. 1 for Johns Hopkins, which came second.

The Best Hospitals Honor Roll, which features only 17 hospitals of the 5,000 medical centers nationwide, has been published annually since 1991. While many of the hospitals on the 2012-13 Roll have been used to appearing on the index, new entries also feature this year: NYU Langone Medical Center in New York, Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, and Indiana University Health in Indianapolis are all fresh arrivals.

The rankings are driven by measurable data such as procedure volume, death rates and the ratio of nurses to patients. A further four specialties – ophthalmology, psychiatry, rehabilitation and rheumatology – are ranked on reputation, with feedback acquired from doctors who have worked extensively in those fields.

Even being considered for the rankings is a feat in itself. To be in with a shot, a hospital has to meet at least one of four criteria: it has to be a teaching hospital, or be affiliated with a medical school, or have at least 200 beds, or have 100 or more beds and the availability of four or more types of important medical technology.

You can catch the full list of U.S. News’ best hospitals at the U.S. News site – does your local medical center feature?