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Awards and Recognition

U.S. News & World Report Rankings

UF Health Shands Hospital

As a perennial leader in health care in Florida, University of Florida Health Shands Hospital is once again recognized by U.S. News & World Report’s Best Hospitals rankings for excellence in adult patient care, with five medical specialties ranked among the nation’s elite. Combined with the four pediatric specialties ranked in the nation’s top 50 by U.S. News & World Report, UF Health Shands has nine specialties recognized.

  • UF Health Shands placed among the nation’s elite programs in several medical specialties, an honor achieved by few health systems in the United States. The five specialties include ear, nose and throat (30th), geriatrics (42nd), obstestrics and gynecology (39th), neurology and neurosurgery (30th) and pulmonology and lung surgery (43rd)
  • UF Health Shands Hospital also had 16 procedures and conditions ranked as “high performing,” meaning they were in the top 10% of all hospitals nationally scored in that specialty. Those were abdominal aortic aneurysm repair; chronic obstructive pulmonary disease; colon cancer surgery; diabetes; heart attack; heart failure; hip fracture; hip replacement; kidney failure; knee replacement; leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma; lung cancer surgery; pneumonia; and prostate cancer surgery; stroke; and transcatheter aortic valve implantation.
  • Other specialties that were rated “high performing” include cardiology, heart and vascular surgery, GI and GI surgery, orthopedics and urology.

UF Health Shands Children's Hospital

  • UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital is committed to providing high quality, compassionate, state-of-the-art care for children and families. As a leader in care, UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital is honored to be recognized as a nationally ranked hospital in four pediatric specialties: diabetes & endocrinology (10th), pulmonology & lung surgery (24th), cardiology and heart surgery (26th) and neonatology (35th) according to the 2023-24 U.S. News & World Report Rankings.
  • University of Florida Health Shands Children’s Hospital has been verified by the American College of Surgeons as a Level 1 pediatric trauma center, one of fewer than 20 in the nation to earn the distinction. The verification means that the hospital meets the ACS’s highest standards for staff, resources and equipment to optimally handle a child’s life-threatening injuries.

UF Health Jacksonville

  • UF Health Jacksonville received high-performing honors in seven patient care procedures/conditions: COPD, diabetes, heart attack, heart failure, kidney failure, PNA and stroke. The organization also had no below-average procedures or conditions, and it met or exceeded all the USNWR clinical outcome metrics used to score and rank the service lines and the procedures and conditions.

ANCC Magnet Designation

UF Health Shands hospitals and programs received a fifth consecutive Magnet designation from the American Nurses Credentialing Center in spring 2023. The Magnet Recognition Program serves as the gold standard for nursing excellence and gives consumers a benchmark for measuring quality care. It’s the highest national honor for any professional nursing practice.

Fewer than 1% of hospitals and health systems nationwide have achieved the designation and only 23 in Florida hold Magnet status. With this designation, UF Health joins only 43 other health care organizations in the nation to receive the Magnet designation five or more consecutive times. UF Health’s first such honor was in 2003. Each designation lasts for four years.

Hospitals that earn Magnet recognition must meet stringent quantitative and qualitative standards that define the quality of nursing and patient care. The application process includes comprehensive written documentation, which is validated by virtual or in-person site visits.

‘A’ Hospital Safety Grade From The Leapfrog Group

UF Health Shands Hospital earned an “A” Hospital Safety Grade in spring 2023 from The Leapfrog Group, a national nonprofit that reports on safety and quality in hospitals and ambulatory surgery centers.

The distinction celebrates UF Health Shands Hospital’s achievements in prioritizing patient safety by protecting patients from preventable harm and errors. The new grade reflects performance primarily during the height of the pandemic.

The Leapfrog Hospital Safety Grade is the only hospital ratings program based exclusively on prevention of medical errors and harm to patients. The grading system is peer-reviewed, transparent and free to the public. Grades are updated every fall and spring.

North Central Florida’s only NCI-designated cancer center

The UF Health Cancer Center has received prestigious designation from the National Cancer Institute, or NCI, and joins the ranks of the country’s most distinguished cancer centers, becoming the 72nd in the United States and the only one in North Central Florida. The designation signifies that the UF Health Cancer Center has met rigorous standards in its leading-edge cancer research programs, advanced scientific leadership, distinctive training programs and forward-thinking community outreach.

At a time when Florida has the nation’s second-highest cancer burden, the funding will provide more resources for innovative clinical trials and increase access to cancer care. Being part of the NCI network means patients in North Central Florida and beyond can be assured of access to the most advanced cancer treatments and innovation — backed by research conducted by dedicated scientists.

4-Star Vizient Quality Rating

UF Health Shands received a 4-star rating on Vizient’s Quality and Accountability Scorecard once again in 2022. The rating reflects our quality of care in comparison to 107 comprehensive academic medical centers across the United States.

Maintaining a 4-star rating during the many challenges of a pandemic is a major accomplishment. It reflects the sustained commitment of all the members of our UF Health team to delivering safe, high-quality care. The rating is based on a score that is composed of six categories: mortality, equity, patient-centeredness, effectiveness, efficiency and safety.

AACN Beacon Awards for Excellence

UF Health’s hospital system includes seven units that have an active Beacon Award for Excellence from the American Association of Critical Care Nurses, or AACN:

  • UF Health Jacksonville, Medical Intensive Care Unit (gold)
  • UF Health Shands Hospital, 5 West Trauma Unit (gold)
  • UF Health Shands Cancer Hospital, Postanesthesia Care Unit (gold)
  • UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital, Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (gold)
  • UF Health Shands Children’s Hospital, Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (gold)
  • UF Health Heart & Vascular and Neuromedicine Hospitals, Postanesthesia Care Unit (silver)
  • UF Health Shands Hospital, Postanesthesia Care Unit (silver)

A Beacon Award — recognized at a gold, silver or bronze level — is a three-year designation that recognizes nursing teams that meet national criteria consistent with Magnet recognition by the American Nurses Credentialing Center, the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award and the National Quality Healthcare Award. The award identifies individual nursing units that promote healthy work environments conducive to collaboration, and collect and use evidence-based research to improve patient outcomes, patient and staff satisfaction and credibility with health care consumers. Beacon Award criteria include leadership structures and systems; appropriate staffing and staff engagement; effective communication, knowledge management, learning and development; and evidence-based practices and processes.

Other Hospital Honors & Awards

  • Baby-Friendly
    Since March 2015, UF Health Shands Hospital has maintained the Baby-Friendly designation awarded by Baby-Friendly USA, a global initiative of the World Health Organization and UNICEF that recognizes birthing facilities that implement specific breastfeeding procedures.
  • Health care sustainability
    In recognition for its achievement and innovation in health care sustainability, UF Health Shands Hospital received a 2023 Greenhealth Emerald Award and was named a 2023 Greening the OR Circle Honoree by Practice Greenhealth, the nation's leading organization dedicated to environmental sustainability in health care.

World Class Care

One of the Nation’s Best for Liver Transplant

The liver transplant program at UF Health Shands Hospital is recognized by the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients, or SRTR, as one of the best liver transplant programs in the nation with a one-year survival rate of 99% — the highest of all hospitals in the U.S. — the result of our commitment to personalized care and our comprehensive team approach. SRTR annually evaluates transplant programs around the country on metrics that are of greatest concern to transplant candidates: one-year post-transplant survival rates, how quickly candidates can receive a transplant and survival rates on the waitlist.

Best Lung Transplant Program in the Southeast

The UF Health Shands Hospital lung transplant program is recognized by the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients, or SRTR, as the highest-performing program for patient outcomes in the southeastern U.S. and as one of the top 5 lung transplant programs in the nation. Our comprehensive team approach and commitment to personalized care are key to a successful recovery and the promise of tomorrow. SRTR annually evaluates transplant programs around the country on metrics that are of greatest concern to transplant candidates: one-year post-transplant survival rates, how quickly candidates can receive a transplant and survival rates on the waitlist.

Cancer Center of Excellence

The UF Health Cancer Center is recognized as a state-designated Cancer Center of Excellence by the Florida governor’s office and the Florida Department of Health. The designation by the Florida Legislature recognizes hospitals and treatment centers that demonstrate excellence in patient-centered coordinated care for people undergoing cancer treatment and chemotherapy.

The UF Health Cancer Center has received this designation three consecutive times, with each one lasting three years.

Comprehensive Stroke Center

  • The UF Health Shands Comprehensive Stroke Center is certified by The Joint Commission and the American Stroke Association/American Heart Association. The comprehensive stroke center certification recognizes hospitals that have leading-edge infrastructure, experienced staff and extensive training to receive and treat people with simple and complex strokes. The UF Health Shands Comprehensive Stroke Center’s certification by The Joint Commission is a testament to meeting comprehensive stroke center standards and requirements, including advanced imaging capabilities, 24/7 availability of specialized treatments, and staff with unique education and competency standards. The UF Health Shands Comprehensive Stroke Center is part of an elite group of hospitals focused on quality and effective stroke care proven to improve patients’ outcomes. Redesignation validates that UF Health has the highest level of stroke care available anywhere in the world, including the cases with the most complex strokes. Their highly specialized team is uniquely trained and has the competencies to care for stroke patients. The stroke center is also a recipient of the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Gold Plus Performance Achievement Award.
  • UF Health Jacksonville is designated as a Comprehensive Stroke Center by the Agency for Health Care Administration and is certified as a Comprehensive Stroke Center with the Gold Seal of Approval™ by The Joint Commission. The hospital is also a recipient of the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association’s Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Gold (UF Health Jacksonville Gold Plus) Performance Achievement Award.
  • UF Health Leesburg Hospital and UF Health The Villages® Hospital are certified as Primary Stroke Centers by The Joint Commission. Our hospitals in Central Florida are committed to ensuring that stroke patients receive the best treatment possible.

UF Health pediatric and adult ECMO program recognized for international excellence

UF Health Shands Hospital is recognized as a Center of Excellence Gold Level program by the Extracorporeal Life Support Organization for its exceptional care in using extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, or ECMO, in both the pediatric and adult programs.

Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation Care Center Network

UF Health is designated as a member of the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation’s Care Center Network, placing it among only 80 medical centers nationwide with the highest level of expertise and resources for the treatment of interstitial lung disease. The UF Health interstitial lung disease program serves a large geographic area in central and northern Florida, southern Georgia and southern Alabama.

America's Best Physical Rehab Centers

Newsweek has recognized UF Health Rehab Hospital on its list of "America's Best Physical Rehab Centers" for 2022. The hospital came in at No. 8 for the state of Florida.

Best Employer Honors

  • UF Health ranked 54th on the Forbes’ list of Florida’s 100 best workplaces in 2022.

Community Support

  • Over 700 employees donated to the 2022 UF Health Shands United Way of North Central Florida campaign to raise more than $213,000 for area residents in need. More than $7.6 million has been raised to date to support United Way of North Central Florida.
  • In 2022, UF Health had 242 walkers who raised over $19,000 for the American Heart Association’s Alachua County Heart Walk.
  • In 2022, 20 teams made up of 181 UF Health employees participated in the American Cancer Society Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk and raised more than $10,000 for the event.