Despite a rising patient satisfaction index and continued investments in hospital infrastructure, the University of Michigan Heath System fell several places in the newly released 2013-2014 U.S. News and World Report rankings that surveyed 2,262 nonfederal hospitals.

Unlike previous years, the U.S. News and World Report America’s Best Hospitals Honor Roll did not recognize UMHS in its list of 18 top scoring national hospitals.

The Honor Roll recognizes the hospitals that are nationally ranked in at least six of 16 medical specialties, as defined by U.S. News. The rankings are based off data that includes a survey of hospital performance, available resources and staff reputation.

Although UMHS remained nationally ranked in multiple medical specialties — including Ophthalmology, Urology and Ear, Nose and Throat — it was dropped from the Honor Roll list. Last year, UMHS’ rank dropped to 17th on the list after remaining at 14th for three consecutive years.

In the categories of Ear, Nose and Throat and Urology, UMHS fell on the charts to 15th and 14th place, respectively, whereas last year both were ranked at 13th. Ophthalmology saw a boost as it moved from 13th to 11th on the list, with 8.7 percent of specialists naming UMHS the best for difficult cases.

UMHS maintained its position as the top ranked hospital in the state and the Detroit metro area.

Doug Strong, director and chief executive officer of University Hospitals and Health Systems, said though he was disappointed with not making the Honor Roll, the ranking was one of many.

“It would have been better if we were recognized on the Honor Roll but we are going keep at what we have done, which is to try to improve quality everyday,” Strong said.

He said the publication’s rankings have gone through methodological changes in the past that could have impacted the ranking of UMHS.

“(We need to) understand how the U.S. News and World Report measures it and if they are measuring things we need to be concerned about or not,” Strong said.

But he said external reviews, though important, were not as important as internal tracking of UMHS’s performance.

“We definitely look at many (outside indicators) but I think our internal view, our tracking of our own business is what we really do concentrate on,” Strong said.

He said UMHS has been recognized for excellence in multiple other publications, which he said makes it a good year overall for the system.

“We have to just take the good with the bad.”

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