Mpls./St. Paul Among Top 5 Cities For Hospital Care

The Twin Cities was ranked fourth for hospital care by HealthGrades on its first-ever list of America's Top 50 Cities for Hospital Care.

Minneapolis/St. Paul claimed the number four spot on the first-ever list of America's Top 50 Cities for Hospital Care-which was released Wednesday by HealthGrades, an independent health care ratings organization based in Denver.

HealthGrades evaluated hospitals solely on patients' clinical outcomes, including risk-adjusted mortality and in-hospital complications. The rankings were based on about 40 million Medicare patient discharges that occurred in 2007, 2008, and 2009.

West Palm Beach, Florida, topped the list, followed by Brownsville, Texas. Dayton, Ohio, rounded out the top three.

Nine hospitals in the Twin Cities area were named by HealthGrades as “distinguished hospitals for clinical excellence.” They are: Fairview Ridges Hospital (Burnsville), Mercy Hospital (Coon Rapids), Fairview Southdale Hospital (Edina), Park Nicollet Methodist Hospital (Minneapolis), Abbott Northwestern Hospital (Minneapolis), North Memorial Medical Center (Robbinsdale), St. Cloud Hospital (St. Cloud), United Hospital (St. Paul), and Regions Hospital (St. Paul).

The Top 50 Cities for Hospital Care list is part of HealthGrades' Hospital Quality and Clinical Excellence study, which surveyed about 15,000 patients. According to the study, nearly all patients surveyed-93.8 percent-would be willing to go out of their way seek care at a more highly rated hospital.

In addition, the majority of health care consumers, 64.9 percent, stated that they would be willing to pay more out of pocket to seek care at a top-rated hospital.

The study found that hospitals named on the distinguished hospitals for clinical excellence list outperform all other hospitals. Specifically, those hospitals had a 29.8 percent lower risk-adjusted in-hospital mortality rate and a 1.9 percent lower risk-adjusted in-hospital complication rate among Medicare beneficiaries compared to all other hospitals.

HealthGrades is an independent health care ratings organization that provides quality ratings, profiles, and cost information on hospitals, physicians, and nursing homes.