Nurse smiling with a baby

Credit: Elena Zhukova/University of California

A nurse in the pediatric cardiology department at UCLA Health with a little patient. UCLA Health comes out on top in the new U.S. News & World Report Best Hospitals rankings.

The hospitals of University of California Health (UCH) once again have been rated among the best in the state and the nation, according to U.S. News & World Report’s 2021-2022 Best Hospitals rankings.

UCLA Health is recognized on the Best Hospitals Honor Roll as the third best in the nation and first in California. UCSF Health is ninth nationally and first in Northern California. All five UC academic health centers that own or operate hospitals were among the best in the state out of 416 California hospitals evaluated.

UCH hospitals further distinguished themselves by being nationally ranked in two or more specialties. Only 140 of the more than 1,800 hospitals eligible for the analysis were ranked in the top 50 in one or more specialty. The neurology and neurosurgery program at UCSF Health is ranked first in the nation.

"We have a high concentration of physician and researcher expertise within University of California Health (UCH), and they share that knowledge across the system. That spirit of collaboration keeps us at the forefront of academic medicine and improves our patients’ quality of care.”
– Dr. Carrie L. Byington, executive vice president of UCH and an infectious disease expert

The rankings for each of the medical centers are:

  • UCLA Health ranked No. 1 in California and the Los Angeles metro area for the third consecutive year, while climbing to No. 3 on the national honor roll. UCLA Health continued as the top hospital in California and in the Los Angeles metro area. UCLA Health earned top 10 national rankings in 12 specialties: cancer; cardiology and heart surgery; diabetes and endocrinology; gastroenterology and GI surgery; geriatrics; neurology and neurosurgery; ophthalmology; orthopedics; psychiatry; pulmonology and lung surgery; rheumatology; and urology. Additionally, UCLA Health’s ear, nose and throat and gynecology care areas rated No. 12, and gynecology was No. 21 nationally. UCLA Health comprises four hospitals on two campuses — Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical CenterUCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital and the UCLA Resnick Neuropsychiatric Hospital on the university’s main campus, and UCLA Medical Center, Santa Monica.  
  • UCSF Health’s Medical Center was ranked as the No. 1 hospital nationwide in neurology and neurosurgery and No. 9 overall nationally. It was the top-ranked hospital in Northern California and No. 3 in California overall. UCSF was rated among the best in the nation in 14 specialties and among the top 10 nationwide in seven: diabetes and endocrinology; ear, nose and throat; geriatrics; neurology and neurosurgery; ophthalmology; psychiatry; and rheumatology. It was also the top hospital in Northern California in cancer; gastroenterology and GI surgery; pulmonology; and urology.
  • UC San Diego Health, with hospitals in La Jolla and Hillcrest, again ranked No. 1 in San Diego and moved up the statewide list to No. 5. UC San Diego Health, the only academic health system in its region, was noted among the best in the nation in 10 specialty care areas: cancer; cardiology and heart surgery; ear, nose and throat; gastroenterology and GI surgery; geriatrics; gynecology; orthopedics; neurology and neurosurgery; pulmonology; and urology. The hospitals were also rated as high performing in 15 common adult procedures and conditions.
  • UC Davis Health’s Medical Center again ranked as the No. 1 hospital in the Sacramento metro area while also moving up the state rankings to No. 7. The medical center scored highly in nine areas of specialty care nationally: cancer; cardiology and heart surgery; diabetes and endocrinology; ear, nose and throat; geriatrics; gynecology; neurology and neurosurgery; orthopedics; pulmonology and lung surgery. It was also rated as high performing in 12 common adult procedures and conditions.
  • UCI Health’s Medical Center was rated No. 8 in Los Angeles area, No. 15 among hospitals in the state, and has been recognized as one of America’s Best Hospitals for 21 consecutive years. The hospital was nationally ranked in two specialties: geriatrics and gynecology. Additionally, UCI Health was recognized as high performing in 15 adult specialties and procedures/conditions.

U.S. News & World Report has been publishing its Best Hospitals report for three decades to help make hospital quality more transparent. The Honor Roll recognizes the top 20 hospitals across the nation that deliver exceptional treatment across multiple areas of care.

The rankings are based on measures such as risk-adjusted survival and discharge-to-home rates, volume and staffing of nursing, among other care-related indicators. Additionally, the report considers input from physicians across the nation who vote for the best hospitals in their specialty.

About University of California Health

University of California Health (UCH) comprises six academic health centers, 20 health professional schools, a Global Health Institute and systemwide services that improve the health of patients and the University’s students, faculty and employees. All of UC’s hospitals are ranked among the best in California and its medical schools and health professional schools are nationally ranked in their respective areas.