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Healthcare Insights

Top magnet hospitals by operating expense

Every hospital is committed to providing the best possible care to the patients and communities that it serves. However, some hospitals go above and beyond. These “Magnet hospitals” are the medical facilities that specifically demonstrate excellence and innovation in nursing and patient care.  

Magnet recognition is the highest credential for hospitals in the United States. Hospitals may be awarded this status by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), which is a subsidiary of the American Nurses Association (ANA).  

Magnet hospital status is highly sought after by nurses looking for new career opportunities or resources and training to further develop their skills.  

The Magnet hospital designation can have tangible benefits for hospitals, too. According to a study published in the National Library of Medicine, Magnet hospitals have: 

  • Lower turnover 
  • Lower vacancy rates 
  • Higher average length of employment 
  • More positive patient outcomes than non-Magnet hospitals 

Below, we’ve ranked the top 15 magnet hospitals in the U.S. by total operating expense.  

Top 15 magnet hospitals ranked by operating expense

Hospital name State Definitive ID Net patient revenue Total operating expenses Explore dataset
New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center NY 541974 $5,734,047,089  $7,240,896,211  Explore
Cleveland Clinic Main Campus OH 3120 $5,241,664,591  $6,240,384,003  Explore
Vanderbilt University Medical Center TN 3742 $4,691,813,631  $5,356,674,083  Explore
Stanford Hospital CA 588 $4,183,895,185  $5,257,860,974  Explore
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center NY 2846 $3,417,060,157  $4,851,823,428  Explore
Massachusetts General Hospital MA 1973 $3,376,488,407  $4,759,986,061  Explore
UCSF Helen Diller Medical Center at Parnassus Heights CA 560 $4,606,030,749  $4,575,166,953  Explore
University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center TX 4017 $3,982,982,020  $4,063,530,890  Explore
University Hospital MI 2096 $4,028,211,053  $3,988,374,149  Explore
IU Health Methodist Hospital IN 1365 $3,113,206,365  $3,879,662,196  Explore
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center CA 430 $3,550,379,003  $3,609,143,674  Explore
Yale New Haven Hospital CT 731 $3,238,519,875  $3,603,821,862  Explore
Brigham and Womens Hospital MA 1969 $2,707,497,042  $3,378,977,229  Explore
Mount Sinai Medical Center (AKA the Mount Sinai Hospital) NY 2837 $2,683,766,080  $3,240,804,472  Explore
Long Island Jewish Medical Center NY 2828 $2,512,859,641  $3,160,716,052 Explore

Fig 1. Data from Definitive Healthcare’s HospitalView database. Data is from October 2021 Medicare Cost Report release. Data accessed May 2022. 

Which Magnet hospital has the highest operating expenses? 

The New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center ranks number one in our list of the top Magnet hospitals. It has a total operating expense of $7,240,896,211. Other Magnet hospitals that rank highly include Vanderbilt University Medical Center and Stanford Hospital, found in Ohio and Tennessee, respectively. Each hospital has an approximate total operating expense of about $5.3B.  

The top 15 Magnet hospitals have a combined total operating expense of about $67B, which accounts for about 17% of all Magnet hospitals we track using HospitalView. As of May 2021, 8.9 percent of U.S. hospitals, or 576 hospitals, have Magnet status. 

Many of these medical facilities also appear on our list of the top 50 hospitals in the U.S. ranked by net patient revenue. These results aren’t too surprising, as all the Magnet hospitals shown in the table are found in high population states and are near or within major cities.  

What is a Magnet hospital? 

Magnet recognition is the highest credential for hospitals in the U.S.  

The purpose of the Magnet designation is to identify qualities of nursing excellence and standardize it to lead to better patient outcomes. For nurses, Magnet hospitals cultivate a highly collaborative culture and focus on continuing education and development at every stage of their careers. Infection rate, mortality rate and length of stay are all lower on average at a Magnet hospital.  

What are the five components of the magnet model? 

The ANCC awards Magnet status when a hospital shows a high standard of excellence in five areas: 

  1. Transformational leadership: Supporting and advocating for strong nursing leaders at every level. 
  2. Structural empowerment: Recognizing nursing contributions and committing to the decentralization of decision-making. 
  3. Exemplary professional practice: Show competence and accountability in professional practices. This also includes systematically measuring care and outcomes.  
  4. New knowledge, innovations and improvements: Requiring the incorporation of research and evidence-based practice into clinical and operational processes.  
  5. Empirical outcomes: Emphasizing positive outcomes across the organization, the workforce, the community and the patient.  

Achieving Magnet status takes time and money. It generally takes a little over four years and approximately $2M to earn credentials from the ANCC. Despite these costs, however, many Magnet hospitals see a $1M increase in revenue per year following their accreditation.  

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