By Lorenzo Benet

For the fifth year in a row, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles has been named to the elite Honor Roll of the nation’s “best” children’s hospitals in the U.S. News & World Report rankings released online June 11.

Staffed by faculty from the Keck School of Medicine of USC, the hospital is often referred to as USC’s third campus. It is one of only 10 children’s hospitals in the country and the only West Coast pediatric medical center to make the list. Children’s Hospital Los Angeles also secured a fifth place overall national ranking, repeating its placement from last year’s survey.

The Best Children’s Hospitals list pulls together clinical and operational data in 10 different pediatric medical specialties from a lengthy survey, completed by the majority of the 179 pediatric centers asked to participate in the rankings. U.S. News required hard data, such as availability of key resources and ability to prevent complications and infections, as well as survival rates, nurse staffing, subspecialist availability, procedure volume and many more pieces of critical information.

The data from the survey are combined with recommendations from pediatric specialists on the hospitals they consider best for children with challenging medical conditions.

This year, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles equaled or improved its national ranking in seven of the 10 categories compared to the 2012-2013 survey, and its outstanding overall scores placed it among the top five nationally as the only children’s hospital on the West Coast to receive the honor. Its rankings in the top 10 medical specialties are: cancer #4 (up from #5 in 2012-2013); cardiology & heart surgery #7 (up from #9); diabetes & endocrinology #5 (up from #7); gastroenterology & gastrointestinal surgery #8; neonatology #8; nephrology #18 (up from #21); neurology & neurosurgery #15; orthopaedics #4 (up from #6); pulmonology #14 and urology #18.

Children’s hospitals that achieve exceptional scores in at least three pediatric specialties are named to the magazine’s “Honor Roll” of Best Children’s Hospitals. Children’s Hospital Los Angeles was joined by nine other hospitals on this prestigious list for 2013-14: Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Boston Children’s Hospital, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston, St. Louis Children’s Hospital-Washington University, Children’s Hospital Colorado in Aurora, Colo., Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, Johns Hopkins Children’s Center in Baltimore and Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC

Children’s Hospital Los Angeles has been selected to the Honor Roll every year since the esteemed list launched in 2009, and Children’s Hospital Los Angeles has been named among the nation’s best children’s hospitals annually since the inception of the magazine’s rankings in 1990.