We rated 1,159 hospitals nationwide for safety and found successful ones throughout the country. The 10 hospitals at the top of our Ratings are in 10 states. They are in big cities and small towns. The Mayo Clinic in Phoenix, seventh in our list, is a teaching hospital; others are small community hospitals. But we also found that even the best hospitals can do better.
Billings Clinic in Montana was at the top of our list, but it earned a safety score of just 72 on our 100-point scale. "The work is hard," said Mark Rumans, M.D., the hospital's physician-in-chief. "We are far from perfect."
These Ratings are based on six categories of patient safety: hospital-acquired infections, readmissions, communication about new medications and discharge, overuse CT scanning, complications, and mortality. The data comes from the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, state governments, and the Leapfrog Group, an independent nonprofit organization that collects data on hospital safety. Our safety score doesn't look at all medical errors or assess how successful hospitals are at treating medical conditions. But they do provide a unique way to compare hospitals in your community and offer important information about hospital safety nationwide.
The 1,159 hospitals in our safety Ratings represent just 18 percent of U.S. hospitals. We can't rate more on safety because information on patient harm is still not reported fully or consistently nationwide. But we have some data on hospital performance for 4,984 hospitals nationwide.
Top 10 hospitals
(Scores are on a 1-to-100 scale.)
- Billings Clinic, Billings, Mont.: 72
- Saint Clare's Hospital, Weston, Wis.: 71
- Alton Memorial Hospital, Alton, Ill.: 71
- Central Vermont Medical Center, Berlin, Vt.: 71
- Kadlec Medical Center, Richland, Wash.: 71
- St. John's Hospital, Springfield, Mo.: 70
- Mayo Clinic Hospital, Phoenix: 70
- Northern Michigan Regional Hospital, Petoskey, Mich.: 69
- Bon Secours St. Francis Health System, Greenville, S.C.: 69
- Memorial Hospital of Union County, Marysville, Ohio: 68