Special Report

This Is America’s Best Healthcare System

The American health care system has failed many Americans. The U.S. spends more on health care per capita yet achieves worse health outcomes — such as prevalence of major illnesses and life expectancy — than many member nations of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. For example, the U.S. life expectancy at birth is 77.3 years, worse than Turkey’s, at 78.6 years, and significantly worse than Japan’s, at 84.7 years.

The U.S. has another dubious distinction. Millions of people turn to emergency rooms when they might be better served by other care facilities, a result of both cost structures and access among other causes. The result is crowded emergency rooms, which the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated. Patients need ways to decide which hospital is better, both for emergency medicine and for other conditions. When it comes to acute care, Community Health Systems is America’s best health care system. (Find out if ER doctors are on this list: these are the doctors most likely to burn out.)

The public can turn to several places to help determine which hospitals and health care systems offer the best service. Many studies even break down hospital services by practice type, such as heart disease, cancer, OB-GYN, mental health, ER, andmore. Among the best known of these evaluations is the U.S. News America’s Best Hospitals. It has a great deal of competition from other sources, which include similar studies by Newsweek and Healthgrades.

One widely followed evaluation of health care systems not regularly seen by the public is released annually by consulting firm Reputation. It recently issued its 2022 Healthcare Reputation Report. The conclusions were based on 2,778,931 patient reviews that covered 179,073 physicians and locations. Health care systems were rated on a scale of 0 to 1,000. 

To arrive at a Reputation Score, the report evaluated acute care facilities within each health care system, considering nine elements, such as star average and review volume, partially derived from online search engine impressions and social media engagement of patients and potential patients. The report measures a location’s sentiment, visibility, and engagement.

Only the 25 largest health care systems based on revenue were included in the reputation evaluation. 24/7 Tempo reviewed the report to find the top 15 health care systems by reputation score. (More specifically by hospital, here are the 46 general hospitals that received the top hospital award this year.)

The health care system that finished first was Community Health Systems with a score of 723. Based in Tennessee, it is part of a publicly traded company that reported revenue of $3.2 billion last year.

Click here to see America’s best health care system

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