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Validity of hospital rankings

Los Angeles Times, April 26, 2010

Every year, U.S. News & World Report compiles a list of the top 50 hospitals in a wide range of specialties. The 2009 version covered 16 areas, including cancer, heart disease, respiratory diseases and urology. The 2010 rankings will come out this July. The rankings tend to be dominated by institutions with big budgets, highly regarded doctors and stellar reputations, the Los Angeles Times reports. For example, hospitals receiving the top five slots for treatment of digestive disorders in 2009 were, in order, the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.; the Cleveland Clinic; Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore; Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston; and the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center.