Regional hospitals receive national notice

by The City Wire staff ([email protected]) 111 views 

Sparks Regional Medical Center in Fort Smith and Washington Regional Medical Center in Fayetteville are among the nation’s Best Regional Hospitals 2011-12, according to U.S. News & World Report, publisher of Best Hospitals.

U.S. News annually publishes the Best Hospitals rankings in July. At the midpoint of the 2011-12 year, its editors have now recognized 247 hospitals outside major metropolitan areas, including Sparks and Washington Regional, to make the Best Regional Hospitals list.

“All Best Regional Hospitals are what we call ‘high performers’ in at least one medical specialty,” says Avery Comarow, U.S. News Health Rankings Editor. “They are fully capable of providing first-rate care, even to most patients who have serious conditions or need demanding procedures.”

Sparks Regional Medical Center is rated a “high performer” in Pulmonology, with Washington Regional a “high performer” in Geriatrics.

The U.S. News also provided the following info about the two hospitals.
• Sparks Regional Medical Center has 304 beds. The hospital had 12,969 admissions in the latest year for which data are available. It performed 5,134 annual inpatient and 8,996 outpatient surgeries. Its emergency room had 54,684 visits.

• Washington Regional Medical Center has 275 beds. The hospital had 12,430 admissions in the latest year for which data are available. It performed 4,748 annual inpatient and 3,757 outpatient surgeries. Its emergency room had 45,318 visits.

U.S. News annually evaluates nearly 5,000 hospitals in 16 different medical specialties. Hard numbers stand behind its analysis in most specialties — death rates, patient safety, procedure volume, and other objective data. Physicians’ responses to a national survey, in which specialists are asked to name hospitals they consider best in their specialty for the toughest cases, also are factored in.