July 14, 2006

National ranking lauds VUMC programs

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National ranking lauds VUMC programs

Seven specialty programs at Vanderbilt University Medical Center are ranked as being in the top of their respective fields in U.S. News & World Report's 17th annual ranking of “America's Best Hospitals.”

Only 3 percent (176) of 5,189 hospitals are ranked in one or more of the 16 specialty categories, yet VUMC placed seven programs on the list.

The only other Tennessee hospital to make the rankings was St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, which placed 17th in Pediatrics.

"Once again, these national rankings show that our patient care rates with the best in the country,” said Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs Harry Jacobson, M.D. “I'm proud of these rankings and proud of the hard work and dedication that they represent."

VUMC's Kidney program boasted the institution's highest national ranking, according to U.S. News, by maintaining its spot at 12th in Kidney Disease for the second straight year.

The Urology program moved up four spots from last year's ranking to place 13th; Ear, Nose & Throat moved up two slots to 14th in the nation.

Vanderbilt held its ranking in Respiratory Disorders (17) for the second consecutive year and remains third in the South behind Duke University Medical Center (9) in Durham, N.C., and Johns Hopkins Hospital (3) in Baltimore.

The Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center maintained its top 20-status by placing 20th for the second straight year.

Gynecology improved 23 spots in this year's poll under the leadership of Nancy Chescheir, M.D., from 47th in 2005 to 24th in this year's survey.

“I am very excited about it because it really emphasizes the excellence of our faculty and a lot of things that they have done to integrate our new strategic vision,” said Chescheir, the Betty and Lonnie S. Burnett Chair of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

VUMC's Endocrinology program ranked 32nd in the national survey.

RTI International, Research Triangle Park, N.C., compiled all hospital data and developed the 2006 rankings on behalf of U.S. News.

Hospitals were ranked in each of 16 specialty areas, with 14 hospitals selected for the “Honor Roll.”

Johns Hopkins Hospital led the U.S. News “Honor Roll” with 30 points in 15 specialties, followed by the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., with 26 points in 13 specialties.

The full rankings list can be accessed at www.usnews.com/best-hospitals and the hard copy edition of 2006 America's Best Hospitals is now available at newsstands.