(NEW YORK) -- U.S. News and World Report on Tuesday released its fifth annual rankings of "Best Children's Hospitals" -- the nations' top hospitals for pediatric specialties including cancer, cardiology, neurology and orthopedics. "Honor Roll" hospitals that excelled in four or more specialties are:
1. Children's Hospital Boston
2. Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
3. Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
4. Texas Children's Hospital, Houston
5. Children's Hospital Colorado, Denver
6. Johns Hopkins Children's Center, Baltimore
7. Seattle Children's Hospital
8. Children's Hospital Los Angeles
9. Children's Hospital of Pittsburg of UPMC
10. New York-Presbyterian Morgan Stanley-Komansky Children's Hospital
11. St. Louis Children's Hospital-Washington University
A place on the list, which is determined by the responses of 1,500 physicians who were asked where they would send the sickest kids, is a badge of honor for hospitals.
"The list is a huge deal, even though we all know it's somewhat of a popularity contest," said Dr. Marie Savard, a Philadelphia internist and ABC News medical contributor. "We all understand that great hospitals don't always get on that list for various reasons. But just because your hospital's not on the list, don't assume it doesn't meet the criteria."
Savard, who is also a patient's rights advocate, said hospitals that tailor treatments to the specific needs of each patient and coordinate care with teams of experts from admission to beyond discharge get top scores.
The types of procedures offered and safety records influence hospitals' rankings, as well as the quality of doctors they attract. And at a time when everyone has money on the mind, value matters too.
"Everybody is looking at value, especially in this day of health care reform and limited dollars," Savard said. "Is the hospital using money wisely?" In other words, "Are we getting the biggest bang for our buck?"
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