Confetti flew from a “duck boat” carrying Boston Mayor Thomas Menino and Massachusetts General Hospital staff around the campus as part of a rolling rally, a city tradition to congratulate sports champions. That was followed by a reception. All of the pomp and circumstance this summer was in celebration of the facility earning the top spot on U.S. News and World Reports 2012-13 Americas Best Hospitals rankings prestigious Honor Roll.
“We wanted to share with our employees this wonderful honor, but the work continues,” said Jeanette Ives-Erickson, RN, DNP, FAAN, senior vice president for patient care services and chief nurse at Massachusetts General, who added she felt humbled by the recognition. Massachusetts General displaced The Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, which had held the top spot for 21 consecutive years. Hopkins was No. 2 in this years rankings.
David F. Torchiana, MD, CEO and chairman of the Massachusetts General Physicians Organization, called the survey a tool to measure ones progress, but added that he considers diseases, healthcare costs, accessibility and other social issues the competition, not fellow hospitals.
“MGH is a remarkable place of healing, where hope can be renewed,” Ives-Erickson said. “Theres an entrepreneurial spirit, and we distinguish ourself because of our incredible workforce who get up every day to do good in the world.”
More than 5,000 RNs practice at Massachusetts General, a Magnet-designated hospital. Ives-Erickson praised the hospitals nurses for continually enhancing quality; safe, relationship-centered care; and patient satisfaction, along with valuing education, innovating and serving the community.
“The U.S. News ranking raises the bar and means we need to make sure we advance our commitment to the delivery of the highest quality care,” Ives-Erickson said. The celebration helped remind everyone associated with the hospital that “we need to renew our commitment to move forward, being mindful this is just one moment in time.”
Brigham and Womens Hospital, NGHs fellow Partners Healthcare facility, ranked ninth in the U.S. News Honor Roll, which recognized the nations top 17 hospitals.
“Moving forward, we will continue to ensure, as knowledge workers, we will keep pace with the changes in the state of the science,” said Jackie Somerville, RN, PhD, senior vice president of patient care services and CNO at Brigham and Womens, who said she was thrilled with the honor.
Somerville said the facilitys rich history, which dates back to 1832, along with a quest to stay on the forefront of safe care delivery while pioneering new advances in care, such as the first face transplant, contributed to its high ranking.
“We offer hope for what might be possible today and tomorrow,” Somerville said. As Brigham and Womens nurses learn from caring for patients undergoing new procedures and treatments, they share that knowledge with fellow nurses within the system and in the broader community.
Brigham and Womens integrates nurse and patient voices into decisions and is focusing on embracing diversity and eliminating health disparities.
“We have had a major focus this year about creating an inclusive environment, one where we celebrate our differences and at the same time embrace the common ground we share,” Somerville said.
“We are blessed with an amazing nursing staff, and many have incredible longevity,” Somerville said. “We are fortunate to have the wisdom and knowledge that comes from many years at the bedside, serving patients and families.”
In the U.S. News Best Childrens Hospitals rankings, Boston Childrens Hospital tied for the No. 1 national honor with the Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia. Boston Childrens ranked in the top four nationally in all 10 specialty categories by which facilities were judged, including No. 1 in Cardiology & Heart Surgery, Nephrology, and Neurology & Neurosurgery.
Debra Anscombe Wood, RN, is a freelance writer.