HOUSTON (March 30, 2006)

Magnet Recognition ProgramMemorial Hermann Memorial City Medical Center has received one of the highest levels of recognition a hospital can receive: Magnet designation for excellence in nursing services by the American Nurses Credentialing Center's (ANCC) Magnet Recognition Program®. The Magnet Recognition Program recognizes health care organizations that demonstrate excellence in nursing practice and adherence to national standards for the organization and delivery of nursing services. Applicants undergo a rigorous evaluation that includes extensive interviews and review of nursing services. "The Magnet recognition is a tremendous achievement for our hospital," said Michelle Bell, chief nursing officer at Memorial Hermann Memorial City Medical Center. "It recognizes the excellent work our nurses do each day and rewards the commitment of our entire staff to serve as a team, providing the highest quality care possible for our patients and our community."

For patients, the Magnet name helps them identify hospitals where they can find satisfied nurses and expect to receive a higher level of care. In fact, studies show Magnet hospitals have higher patient satisfaction, better quality outcomes and the right nurse-to-patient ratios.

For nurses, the Magnet seal of approval helps identify hospitals where they can flourish as a professional, where they have the resources needed to provide high-quality care, where they feel valued and where they are rewarded for going above and beyond for patients. Research has shown that Magnet facilities consistently outperform other facilities in recruiting and retaining nurses.

Bell added, "Magnet recognition is to nursing what the Lombardi trophy is to football or the gold medal is to the Olympics." Drs. Mehmet Oz and Michael Roizen, authors of YOU: The Smart Patient recently said on ABC News' Good Morning America that "nurse Magnet hospitals are where the best nurses work, the morale is highest and the hospital has the most resources. You want to be where the nurses want to be" (March 30, 2006).

Memorial Hermann Memorial City joins five other hospitals in Houston that have earned this designation. All but Memorial Hermann Memorial City are based in the renowned Texas Medical Center. Memorial City Medical Center is the first hospital in the Memorial Hermann System to receive this prestigious recognition. Of the 4,000+ hospitals in the U.S., The Commission on Magnet® recognizes 348 healthcare organizations in 44 states for their excellence in nursing service.

To earn the Magnet designation, a hospital must go through a lengthy application and review process. The first step is applying for the program. Hospitals then must submit significant documentation to show how they implement excellence in nursing care. This is followed by a multi-day visit from reviewers in the program, and finally a review of all documents and a visit by Magnet officials. There are 14 separate areas that are assessed as part of determining whether a hospital deserves magnet designation. These include quality of nurse leadership, perception of the value of nursing by other health professionals, compensation and fringe benefits for nurses, quality of care, dedication to quality improvement, level of education and teaching offered to incoming nurses or students, and management style. These and other areas are called Forces of Magnetism, and they can be used as a way of assessing how well hospitals retain and attract new nurses to their programs. Should the hospital meet all required standards, they earn the prestigious Magnet designation.

ANCC is the largest and most prominent nursing credentialing organization in the United States. Memorial Hermann Memorial City Medical Center's Magnet status is valid for four years.


Besides leading the country in quality patient care, nursing excellence, and innovations in professional nursing practice, Magnet-designated facilities:

• Consistently outperform other facilities in attracting and retaining nurses, helping to ensure that patients receive the best possible care.

• Provide a professional environment guided by a nursing leader who advocates and supports development and excellence in nursing practice.

• Exhibit a very strong culture with a work environment that is both highly professional and fulfilling.