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Posted on Tue, Jul 17, 2012 : 12:10 p.m.

U.S. News & World Report ranks UMHS first in the state, among top 20 in nation

By Amy Biolchini

U.S. News and World Report has ranked the University of Michigan Hospitals and Health Centers No. 1 in the state and in the metro Detroit area for health care, hospital officials announced Tuesday.

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University Hospital at the University of Michigan Health System in Ann Arbor.

University of Michigan Health System photo

The 2013 “America’s Best Hospitals” rankings also list UMHS as 17th in the nation. The designation marks the 18th straight year in a row the health system has been named to the report’s honor roll. Last year, UMHS ranked 14th nationwide.

St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor Hospital was ranked 12th out of 67 hospitals in the metro Detroit area and 16th out of 176 hospitals in Michigan for health care.

This is the first year U.S. News has released statewide hospital rankings and the third year for the metro area ranking. Hospitals are ranked mostly according to objective data, much of which comes from the federal government. The data includes death rates, the number of patients and ratios, such as the balance between nurses and patients.

To make the honor roll, hospitals have to excel in specialty care areas. To make a top ranking in specialty care divisions, a hospital must meet one of the following criteria:

  • Be a teaching hospital
  • Be affiliated with a medical school
  • Have at least 200 beds
  • Have at least 100 beds and offer at least four of eight specific medical technologies

One factor that goes into specialty care rankings is reputation scores from physicians.

U.S. News analyzed 4,825 hospitals across the country. Only 140 of them performed well enough to rank in even one specialty area of care.

U-M is the only hospital in Michigan to make the national honor roll, a designation hospital administration attributes to strong collaboration between the hospital and medical school, the full spectrum of services it offers and the access to partnerships with experts across the university.

The health system has also been ranked in the top 20 nationally for seven specialty care areas: cancer; diabetes and endocrinology; ear, nose and throat; geriatrics, ophthalmology; rheumatology and urology.

In the metro Detroit area, the top five hospitals ranked by U.S. News are as follows:

  1. University of Michigan Hospitals and Health Centers in Ann Arbor
  2. Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak
  3. Harper University Hospital in Detroit
  4. Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit
  5. Beaumont Hospital in Troy

Amy Biolchini covers Washtenaw County, health and environmental issues for Reach her at (734) 623-2552, or on Twitter.


Rudra N Rebbapragada

Sun, Jul 22, 2012 : 3:22 p.m.

THE ROLE OF HOSPITAL IN HEALTH CARE : I have no socialist fantasies or socialist agenda. I understand as to how a human being exists in a given environment and as a member of a biological and social community. We glorify hospitals and hospital care for providing medical and therapeutic interventions when we encounter a problem that undermines the quality of our existence. The best way to preserve, and to defend human existence would be that of promoting good and positive health. People are living for more years and are enjoying a good quality of life because of awareness, better environmental sanitation, safe drinking water, access to nutritious meals, immunization, and control of infectious agents. We have to promote this understanding to include other areas of human behavior that pose risks to good and positive health.

Jeff Jackson

Wed, Jul 18, 2012 : 2:47 a.m.

Interesting that this report came out at right about the same time Consumer Reports released their ratings of hospital safety. According to their data, you're better off at St. Joe's (overall score 62) than U-M (overall score 50). St. Joe's also has a better-than-average mortality rate, while U-M does not. The CR report rated only safety factors such as infections and readmission rates, and not the overall quality of the health care. It looks like US News took more factors into account. But it just goes to show that one set of data doesn't tell the whole story of a hospital.


Wed, Jul 18, 2012 : 2:34 a.m.

Congrats to them! I had a chronic condition that went undiagnosed by run of the mill hospitals in other states then moved here. They nailed it right away. Pretty good diagnostically. There's always room for improvement. I'd like to see them score higher in cardiology, since that's such an important area. I'd much rather go there than St. Joes, however. I went to the Cleveland Clinic for a second opinion. I found them remarkable in their understanding of my problem and their standard of care was exceptional.

Kai Petainen

Wed, Jul 18, 2012 : 12:56 a.m.

Wait a second. It didn't crack the honor roll for 'Best Children's Hospital'?!! After building the most expensive building in Michigan (the state of Michigan) ever..... it's not on the honor roll? Really? Disappointing result. In case you're wondering, Boston gets the #1 spot.


Wed, Jul 18, 2012 : 4:18 a.m.

When I'd the new Mott open? Ah........


Wed, Jul 18, 2012 : 2:59 a.m.

Very disappointing, but not necessarily surprising. In concealing the child porn case before the opening of the new Mott Children's Hospital, UM administrators proved they care more about buildings than people.

Kai Petainen

Wed, Jul 18, 2012 : 12:52 a.m.

I'm proud of UofM and of the hospital, but I am disappointed with the results. This is good news and bad news. So congrats for the good news! But... there is some bad news... Good that it is #1 in the state, but even after building the most expensive building (ever) in Michigan... I find it sad that it fell to a lower ranking in the country. Even on the honor roll, it is ranked last at #17... which makes you wonder.... why did they make a list of 17? Usually lists have 5, 10, 25, 50, etc.... 17 is such an odd number. According to a patient satisfaction results, they got 'average' scores and a few 'good' scores. Congrats to these components at the hospital: #14 in Cancer, #13 in Urology, Ophthalmology, Ear/Nose/Throat, #15 in Geriatrics #4 in Pediatrics -- Cardiology


Wed, Jul 18, 2012 : 4:20 a.m.

Only 17 hospitals ranked at or near the top in six or more specialties. UM was the 17th on the list.


Wed, Jul 18, 2012 : 4:17 a.m.

It is a list of top 100. How is 17th last?


Wed, Jul 18, 2012 : 3:23 a.m.

To make the Honor Roll, hospitals had to rank at or near the top in six or more specialties.


Tue, Jul 17, 2012 : 6:32 p.m.

The methodology is everything in this kind of poll. What do they consider and are there objective quality measures or is it all about reputation. The University Hospital has a "famous" risk management program, which involves amitting mistakes and apologizing early (it is a joke. It is really about getting patients to settle claims before they get a lawyer). The reason they started this program was because they had so many malpractice suits against them. Does that sound like high quality care? As a physician at UMHS, I have seen many many negligent mistakes. They have lots of high technology and treat a lot of rare diseases but the emphasis on research and delegating too much to unqualified residents and fellows results in many mistakes. This survey is meaningless.


Wed, Jul 18, 2012 : 4:15 a.m.

One bitter doctor vs thousands of satisfied patients, national rankings, and billions of dollars voting for UMHS.


Wed, Jul 18, 2012 : 3:24 a.m.

More on methodology.


Wed, Jul 18, 2012 : 3:13 a.m.


Wed, Jul 18, 2012 : 12:19 a.m.

so you were/ are a Um dr.?? who was trespassed?? love to know the details of that in order to put your relentlessly negative views of a generally fine institution ( with the inevitable kinks that come with size) in perspective. My own experience with a wide range of UMHS facilities/depts has been overwhelmingly positive.

Rudra N Rebbapragada

Tue, Jul 17, 2012 : 6:08 p.m.

The ranking of hospitals : I wonder as to how this ranking reflects upon the health status of individual members of our community. Man always exists in a given environment as a member of a social community. The objective criteria to rank a hospital must include some objective information about the health status of the community that the hospital serves. We have to know the health problems of the community and compare it with the services that the hospital can provide.

Billy Bob Schwartz

Tue, Jul 17, 2012 : 7:48 p.m.

The U of M Hospital system serves a community way, way, way beyond its immediate environs. People come here from all over America and from other countries, too. What criteria do we use to include that community in our figuring? The health status of many people who come to this hospital system is often "I am sick, and I need help. Who can best help me?!" I think that, in most situations, U of M is a great choice.


Tue, Jul 17, 2012 : 7:30 p.m.

"The objective criteria to rank a hospital must include some objective information about the health status of the community that the hospital serves." Nonsense. A thought process based on social welfare fantasies.


Tue, Jul 17, 2012 : 5:19 p.m.

Another top ten for Ann Arbor! It is really too bad that some people don't want Ann Arbor to grow and develop its business community!