Bascom Palmer Eye Keeps Top Ophthalmology Hospital Ranking

Diana Phillips

August 14, 2018

Bascom Palmer Eye Institute in Miami, Florida; Wills Eye Hospital in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and Wilmer Eye Institute of Baltimore, Maryland, have once again taken the top three spots on the U.S. News & World Report's annual ranking of the Best Ophthalmology Hospitals nationwide.

This is the 17th time since the rankings were initiated 29 years ago that the University of Miami Health's Bascom Palmer has received top billing, and the 15th year in a row, according to a press statement.

The 2018 to 2019 rank-ordered list of top ophthalmology hospitals reported online today by U.S. News is nearly identical to last years' list, with the top 12 of last year's 13 hospitals retaining their positions. Emory University Hospital, which last year met the minimum scoring requirement to be included among the best ophthalmology hospitals, did not make the cut this year.

The rankings are determined via a survey of randomly selected board-certified ophthalmologists in which respondents are asked to identify the eye hospitals with the best expertise in handling difficult cases, regardless of location or cost. The facilities are then ranked on the basis of "reputation scores."

In total, U.S. News ranks hospitals in 16 speciality hospitals annually. Of the 16, 12 are ranked largely on the basis of objective data, including mortality rates, patient safety outcomes, and patient experience measurement, whereas ophthalmology, psychiatry, rehabilitation, and rheumatology are ranked on the basis of reputation. This is because the care provided in these "reputational specialities" is largely delivered on an outpatient basis with very few patient deaths. Therefore, the risk-adjusted mortality rates that are heavily weighted in the ranking of other specialities are of little value, according to the publication.

To be ranked among the best ophthalmology hospitals, facilities had to be cited by at least 5% of the physicians in the speciality who responded to the last 3 years of U.S. News surveys.

The 12 ophthalmology hospitals that met this criteria this year are presented here in rank order according to their reputation scores:

  1. University of Miami Health System's Bascom Palmer Eye Institute, Miami, Florida (54.7/100)

  2. Wills Eye Hospital, an independent affiliate of Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (50.3/100)

  3. Wilmer Eye Institute of Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, Maryland (39.2/100)

  4. Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston (27.0/100)

  5. Stein and Doheny Eye Institutes, UCLA Medical Center, Los Angeles, California (22.6/100)

  6. Duke University Hospital, Durham, North Carolina (14.1/100)

  7. University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, Iowa City (13.2/100)

  8. W. K. Kellogg Eye Center-Michigan Medicine, Ann Arbor (8.9/100)

  9. Cole Eye Institute, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio (8.1/100)

  10. University of California, San Francisco, Medical Center, San Francisco (7.7/100)

  11. New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai, New York City (6.8/100)

  12. USC Roski Eye Institute, Los Angeles (5.9/100)

An additional 27 ophthalmology hospitals were recommended by at least 1% of the survey respondents but not ranked, including the John A. Moran Eye Center, University of Utah Hospitals and Clinics (4.7/100); Emory University Hospital (4.3/100); and Mayo Clinic (4.3/100).

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