What’s the Score

What’s the Score

-A response from our editor

In the Spring 2011 issue of Chicago Health, we printed a story called, “Heartful,” which discussed the best-ranked Chicagoland hospitals in the field of cardiology. And we caught a little guff from a hospital that was not included.

For this particular story, we cited rankings compiled by the Illinois Hospital Report Card and Consumer Guide to Health Care. At that time, we used the most recent results available, which were gathered between April 2009 and the end of March 2010. There were a lot of well-known hospitals on that list. Some Chicago hospitals, however, did not make the Report Card’s cut. But that doesn’t mean those hospitals are not quality care facilities.

As a magazine committed to journalistic integrity, our reporters, writers and editors go to great lengths to gather as much correct information as possible so we can report the stories and information to you. I have no doubt that “Heartful” was a valuable story, with correct and worthwhile information.

As you may know, there are plenty of outlets where one can get useful information. This applies not just to the reading and viewing public, but also to those of us in the media as well. When looking for the top Chicago doctors and hospitals, there are a variety of trustworthy ranking lists we access.

There is Castle Connolly, which creates its ranking order through a physician-led nomination and review process. Consumers’ Checkbook uses patient surveys to build its lists. U.S. News and World Report, Thomson Reuters and others set their own standards for their rankings. Two well-regarded quality control executives at Northwestern Memorial Hospital and the University of Chicago Medical Center critique these sources on chicagohealthonline.com.

I invite you to visit the Website and draw your own conclusions.

The cover story of our next issue of Chicago Health will focus on heart health, and we will have a lot more to say on this subject at that time.

Between now and then, use the wealth of information available to you, and always feel free to write me a letter with your thoughts, findings or concerns. –ed.