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These Are the Best Maternity Hospitals in America, New Report Reveals

The 311 high-performing maternity hospitals recognized boast fewer C-sections and fewer newborn complications than other medical centers.
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By Wyndi Kappes, Associate Editor
Updated December 5, 2023
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Image: Maria Manco

A plethora of important health decisions come with pregnancy, and perhaps one of the biggest centers on where you’ll deliver baby. If you are on the hunt for a maternity hospital you can count on, it’s worth taking a look at U.S. News and World Report’s 2024 list of the Best Hospitals for Maternity Care.

The report expands on U.S. News’ existing best hospitals rankings and is “designed to help [parents] identify hospitals that excel in delivering babies for uncomplicated pregnancies,” said Min Hee Seo, a senior health data scientist at U.S. News in a press release.

To compile its list, U.S. News sent a maternity services survey to private hospitals across America. Using objective data submitted by a record 680 hospitals this year, the researchers determined the quality of care based on three categories: outcomes, process and structure.

Outcomes refers to the results of care, including death, harm to patients and other consequences. Outcomes accounted for 60 percent of the score and included data on:

  • C-section rates: 30 percent
  • Newborn complication rates: 25 percent
  • Episiotomy rates: 5 percent

Process refers to the way in which diagnoses, treatments, and practices to avoid harm to patients are rendered. Process accounted for 35 percent of the score and included data on:

  • Early elective delivery rates: 5 percent
  • Exclusive breast milk feeding rates: 20 percent
  • Vaginal birth after cesarean rates: 5 percent
  • Transparency on racial/ethnic disparities: 5 percent

Structure refers to hospital resources connected with patient care. accounted for 5 percent of the score and included data on whether each hospital met new federal criteria for “birthing-friendly” practices.

After scrutinizing the scores of 680 hospitals, the U.S. News’ Best Hospitals for Maternity report features 311 high-performing hospitals. These hospitals, which meet the highest standard for moms and their babies, boast C-section rates that are 26 percent lower and newborn complication rates that are 37 percent lower than unrecognized hospitals that participated in the survey.

New this year is a special recognition of hospitals across the U.S. serving communities that depend on them for access to vital maternity care services. The 2024 ratings evaluation highlights 73 inaugural Maternity Care Access Hospitals.

"While growing maternity care deserts in parts of the country have left millions of people without local access to maternity care, these U.S. News-recognized Maternity Care Access Hospitals persist in providing this vital service to under-resourced communities,” U.S. News health data scientist Jennifer Winston, Ph.D., said in a press release.

While the list may be helpful, it’s important to note that it does not address high-risk pregnancies or account for limiting factors, such as household income and geographical area.

To view the rankings for the best maternity hospitals and browse those near you, visit U.S.News.com.

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