Primary Listings

Hospital Compare – at medicare.gov (all states) Hospital star ratings, complications Editor's Pick

Visit Hospital Compare to find hospital star ratings and complications for hospitals in all states. Compare 3 hospitals at one time. Federal government (at medicare.gov) gives 1 to 5 stars and compares hospital ratings for heart attack (AMI), heart failure, pneumonia, COPD, stroke, hip & knee, preventing infections and surgical complications, timeliness of Emergency (ER) dept., use of medical imaging. Most data are from calendar 2019, but may vary by measure. Includes death rate comparisons from heart failure, heart attack, pneumonia, COPD, stroke, CABG; and return to hospital (readmission) rates. Click on Timely & Effective Care, or Complications. Shows patient satisfaction HCAHPS ratings (patient experience opinions) from 2019. Some info on colonoscopies and cataracts. Editor’s Pick because it’s the best of what is out there. The federal government standardized broad ratings for all hospitals, and most ratings are based on more than just Medicare patients. Small volume hospitals will not show data for some measures. Graphs are no longer available. Today’s stars may reflect older data than shown at the website. Read the fine print. Updated 2021.

Accredited Heart Care Centers – American College of Cardiology

List of Accredited heart care centers from the nonprofit American College of Cardiology (ACC). The ACC accreditation program includes the Chest Pain Centers program previously within the Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care and the Society of Chest Pain Centers (both known as SCPC.) Some accredited centers have PCI (percutaneous cardiac intervention). Must meet emergency department requirements and standards for timely diagnosis and treatment. List is interactive by state or type of accreditation, including atrial fibrillation (A Fib), cardiac cath, chest pain center, heart failure, heartCARE center, transcatheter valve (TAVR) certification, and more. Shows location of each hospital. Consumers might be surprised to learn that their favorite hospital’s heart program is not accredited or certified.

Best Cardiac Surgery Hospital Ratings STS – Society of Thoracic Surgeons Editor's Pick

If you’re looking for the Best Cardiac Surgery hospitals, consider these ratings by STS – the Society of Thoracic Surgeons. Compare hospital ratings for cardiac surgery in your state. Many hospitals voluntarily report their results, which are posted here for adult coronary artery bypass graft (CABG), valve replacement, congenital heart surgery and lobectomy for lung cancer. Most results cover the time period through December 2019. Most hospitals get two stars for “as expected” performance. Outstanding hospitals get 3 stars; under-performing hospitals get 1 star. Search by state or name of hospital to find the best. Excellent website. The Society of Thoracic Surgeons is a not-for-profit organization representing more than 7,500 surgeons and others dedicated to ensuring the best possible outcomes for surgeries of the heart, lungs, esophagus, and other surgical chest procedures.

Hospital Compare – 30-day Death Rates, Heart Attack, Heart Failure & CABG Editor's Pick

Find 30-day death rates for cardiac hospitalizations: heart failure, heart attack and CABG patients. Hospital Compare, the federal government site from CMS, shows whether hospitals meet expected 30-day survival rates for heart attack and heart failure Medicare cases. National death rates were 12.7% for heart attack, 11.3% for heart failure and 3% for CABG (heart bypass) surgery patients. Compare hospitals in your area. The report identifies if your hospital is significantly better or worse than the national value. Dates of data can be found under the Overall Star Rating: “Learn how Medicare calculates this rating” (get detail).  The data period for these measures was a 3-year period ending 6/30/2019; as shown May 20, 2022.

Best Cardiovascular Hospital Lists – How Good are They?

How good are the lists of “best cardiovascular hospitals”? Research published in JAMA Cardiology (Journal of the American Medical Association, Cardiology) studied US News & World Report best hospitals list and 2018-2019 rankings for Cardiology and Heart Surgery. For cardiovascular care, the physician researchers indeed found lower 30-day mortality rates (better survival) and higher patient satisfaction at the top cardiac hospitals when compared with nonranked hospitals. Results applied to heart attack (AMI-acute myocardial infarction), heart failure and coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG or heart bypass). Researchers did not find lower readmission rates at the top-ranked hospitals. Published December 2018.

Blue Distinction Centers: Cardiac, Cancer, Hip, Knee, Fertility, Maternity, Back, Spine, Bariatric Surgery, Organ Transplants, Gene Therapy, Substance Abuse

The Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies have designated national Blue Distinction Centers meeting their standards and selection criteria for bariatric weight loss surgery, cancer care, cardiac (heart) care, fertility care, organ transplants (e.g. adult and pediatric bone marrow/stem cell, heart, lung, liver), pancreas (adult only) transplants, total knee and hip replacement, maternity care, back spine surgery, Substance Use Treatment and Recovery (new in 2020), cellular immunotherapy, and gene therapy for ocular disorders. Quality criteria can be found from the home page. In addition to Blue Distinction Centers, the Blue Distinction+ (Plus) designates high quality centers considered to have “more affordable care”. (No further information is available on prices.) Interactive database; updated 2021.

usnews.com Best Hospitals 2022-2023: Cardiology and Heart Surgery

Who are the best hospitals in cardiology and heart surgery for 2022-2023, according to the usnews.com rankings?  The top of the Cardiac specialty list are Cleveland Clinic (Ohio) and Mayo Clinic (Rochester, MN). Top 50 hospitals ranked. See if there is one in your state. Rankings include survival ratings using Medicare data from 2018 to 2020. Hospitals ranked higher if they participated in public transparency reporting by the medical professional societies. Aortic valve and TAVR surgery are including in the scores and ratings process. Minimum volume of 1,838 Medicare cases over 3 years (2018-2020). Updated July 2022.

Watson Health 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals – 2022

Watson Health (formerly Truven Health Analytics) 2021 selection of the top 50 cardiovascular hospitals. Top selected hospitals with significant heart care programs are listed in categories: teaching hospitals with cardiovascular residencies, teaching hospitals without such residencies, and community hospitals. List only, organized alphabetically in each category. Study primarily used Medicare data from 2019 and 2020. Data period for some measures were based on the federal fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2020. Consequently, about 7 months of the Covid-19 pandemic period were included in half of the measures. The study examined both clinical outcomes (e.g. survival or mortality, complications, readmissions) and efficiency measures. In addition, pre-pandemic hospital patient experience scores from 2019 were added this year. Released November 2021 by IBM Watson Health.

Other Helpful Listings

Hospital Ratings at HealthGrades (all states) 2021

HealthGrades Hospital Ratings (5-star, 3-star, 1-star) for 2021 on over 30 diseases & inpatient procedures: Stroke, back surgery, COPD, diabetes, gall bladder surgery, bowel obstruction, GI Bleed, hip fracture repair, hip replacement, total knee replacement, prostate removal, TURP, hysterectomy (listed under gynecologic surgeries), respiratory failure, pneumonia, cardiac bypass, heart attack, heart failure, angioplasty, defibrillator, pacemaker, valve surgery, sepsis, pancreatitis, pulmonary embolism, abdominal aneurysm, stomach surgery, peripheral vascular bypass & more. Probably Medicare-only data for most conditions, although some states provide maternity, appendectomy, and bariatric surgery (gastric bypass) data. More extensive list than the federal government’s site. Publicly-traded company. Most data in 2021 ratings are from Medicare patients, from 2017 to 2019. Patient satisfaction ratings (2019 data) are featured by HealthGrades. One hospital at time, unfortunately. No longer Editor’s Pick, since HealthGrades removed the 3-year patient volume, and actual mortality or complication rates compared to predicted. Mostly, the site shows which ratings awards were given to the hospital by HealthGrades – a fee likely was required for publicizing the award.

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