The Top 10 Health Systems in the U.S.

Advocate Health Care of Oak Brook, Ill., was named the top U.S. healthcare system in an annual ranking by Thomson Reuters. In a statement, Reuters said the best health systems in the country provided better care, followed standards of care more closely, saved more lives, created fewer patient complications, made fewer patient safety errors, and earned better overall patient-satisfaction scores than their peers.

To qualify for the list, a health system had to have at least two short-term, general acute-care hospitals. Its survey included 285 systems, and some of the key performance measures were:

•    Risk-adjusted mortality.
•    Risk-adjusted complications.
•    Risk-adjusted patient safety.
•    30-day risk-adjusted mortality rate.
•    30-day risk-adjusted readmission rate.
•    Severity-adjusted average length of stay.
•    HCAHPS score (patient rating of overall hospital performance).

Reuters reported that if all hospitals performed at the same level as the 100 top hospitals in its survey nearly 116,000 additional patients would survive each year, the average patient stay would decrease by half a day, and the expense per discharge would drop by $462. (It based these findings by analyzing Medicare inpatients over one year.) The winning systems had a total of 51 member hospitals and 250,827 patient discharges in 2009. Here are the top 10:

1. Advocate Health Care, Oak Brook, Ill.
2. Cape Cod Healthcare, Hyannis, Mass.
3. CareGroup Healthcare System, Boston
4. Kettering Health Network, Dayton, Ohio
5. Maury Regional Healthcare System, Columbia, Tenn.
6. Mayo Foundation, Rochester, Minn.
7. NorthShore University HealthSystem, Evanston, Ill.
8. OhioHealth, Columbus, Ohio
9. Partners HealthCare, Boston
10. Spectrum Health, Grand Rapids, Mich.

The report was compiled using data from the Medicare Provider Analysis and Review (MedPAR) dataset and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Hospital Compare dataset.  See the complete list of hospitals and survey results here.