The University of Kentucky’s Albert B. Chandler Hospital is ranked No. 1 in Kentucky among regional hospitals, according to U.S. News & World Report’s annual hospital rankings.
UK also cracked the top 50 national ranking for care in four areas: 37th in diabetes and endocrinology, 43rd in geriatrics, 44th in neurology and neurosurgery, and 50th in cancer.
U.S. News gave UK “high-performing” marks in gastroenterology, nephrology, orthopedics, pulmonology and urology.
U.S. News analyzed more than 2,600 metrics in 21 specialties, procedures and conditions. The annual ranking lists the 20 best hospitals in the nation, which include the Mayo Clinic, the Cleveland Clinic, and the University of Michigan health care system. It also has regional rankings by state.
In Kentucky, UK was followed by St. Elizabeth Healthcare Edgewood-Covington, Baptist Health Lexington, Norton Hospital in Louisville, and Baptist Health Louisville.
U.S. News said it began ranking regional hospitals to give people more information about health care close to home.
UK officials said the jump in ranking for cancer care was due to UK’s Markey Cancer Center becoming the state’s only National Cancer Institute-designated center in the state.
“We see 50 percent of our patients coming from Eastern Kentucky, which has some of the highest rates of cancer in the country — particularly lung cancer and colon cancer. So the Markey Cancer Center is vitally important to our region,” said Dr. Mark Evers, director of the Markey Cancer Center.
An internal survey of UK HealthCare employees showed a different story. UK ranks in the 39th percentile for employee engagement among academic health care centers nationwide. Surveyed physicians reported engagement rates in the 6th percentile, up slightly from the year before.
One survey question, for example, asked if hospital administration was responsive to feedback from providers. According to the survey, 41 percent of doctors were unfavorable, 31 percent neutral and 28 percent favorable.