July 16, 2009 — Three medical specialties at the University of Virginia Health System are ranked in the 20th annual survey of "America's Best Hospitals" from U.S. News & World Report. The listings appear in the magazine's July 21 issue and can be found online.
U.Va. specialties ranked in this year's guide are endocrinology (12th); cancer (39th); and ear, nose and throat (47th). U.Va.'s endocrinology (hormonal disorders) program has consistently ranked as one of the nation's top programs by U.S. News since the 1990s.
"We are honored to have medical specialties continually ranked among the best in the nation by our peers and U.S. News' measures of excellence," said R. Edward Howell, vice president and chief executive officer. "U.Va. Health System is committed to providing outstanding health care to our patients and the communities we serve."
According to U.S. News, out of 4,861 hospitals studied, only 3.5 percent – 174 in all – are ranked in one or more of the 16 specialties in this year's "America's Best Hospitals." Ranked hospitals tend to offer more advanced treatments, use new research in patient care and conduct more research that gives critically ill patients more options in their treatment.
"Our patients and their families place a sacred trust in our faculty and staff to provide them with the highest quality medical care possible," said Dr. Steven T. DeKosky, vice president and dean of the School of Medicine. "At the University of Virginia Health System, we are committed to providing innovative treatments and compassionate care to all patients, and that is the standard we seek to be measured against."
Most ranked institutions follow and pioneer new treatment guidelines, according to the U.S. News Web site. They also conduct lab-to-bedside research and exploit the latest advances in imaging, surgical devices and other technologies.