San Francisco has built a reputation as a leading center of innovation and technology in the last 50 years.

Biomedical sciences and healthcare is at the forefront of this multi-prong renaissance. The hospitals, research installations, and universities in the Bay Area employ thousands of people and contribute tens of billions of dollars to the economy.

The growth of the health sector is attributed to a number of factors, including the presence of best hospitals in San Francisco Bay Area; public desire for top-notch health care and a bureaucracy that supports general health and wellness.

In this study, we have found the highest-rated hospitals and will cover our methodology for selection. Let’s start with the best of the best.

An exterior view of St. Francis hospital in San Francisco.

A List of The Best Hospitals in San Francisco

San Francisco is home to some of the best regional and international hospitals. The hospitals offer everything from elective medical care and treatment to surgery and emergency services. According to a recent US News Health report, the following 8 hospitals are ranked top in the city:

1. UCSF Medical Center
500 Parnassus Avenue, San Francisco, CA Zip Code 94143-0296
Top Hospital Awards and Recognitions: Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award, US News & World Report Top Hospitals, Boyden Staff Awards and Albert Lasker Basic Medical Research Award. Several physicians from UCSF have also won the Nobel Prize (health sciences).

Ranking specialties, procedures and conditions
The hospital is ranked high in performing the procedures and conditions: cancer, diabetes and endocrinology, cardiology and heart surgery and neurology and neurosurgery. The UCSF Medical Center hospital network runs several campuses in the Greater San Francisco. The biggest campuses include the UCSF Helen Diller Medical Center at Parnassus; UCSF Mission Bay and UCSF Mount Zion. The new campus at Mission Bay has a research center, women’s hospital and cancer unit.

2. John Muir Health Concord Medical Center
1601 Ygnacio Valley Road – Walnut Creek, CA Zip Code 94598-3194
Top Hospital Awards and Recognitions: Newsweek World’s Best Hospitals, America’s Physician Groups – Elite Status, US News Health Report Top Hospitals and Healthgrades Top Hospitals.

Ranking specialties, procedures and conditions
The Walnut Creek based facility is rated top in performing a number of adult and children’s specialties, medical procedures and conditions. The high rated specialties, according US News Health report are geriatrics, pulmonary and lung surgery and gastroenterology and GI surgery.

3. California Pacific Medical Center
2333 Buchanan Street San Francisco, CA Zip Code 94115-1925
Top Hospital Awards and Recognitions: US News Health Report Top Hospitals

Ranking specialties, procedures and conditions
California Pacific Medical Center is a surgical, general medical treatment and teaching hospital. It is also a flagship hospital managed under the Sacramento, CA based Sutter Health system. The high rated conditions and procedures at California Pacific Medical Center include Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), knee replacement and heart failure.

4. Sequoia Hospital – Redwood City
170 Alameda De Las Pulgas, Redwood City Zip Code 94062-2799
Top Hospital Awards and Recognitions: 5 Star Rating 2019 Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, 2019 Grade A for Patient Safety by Leap Frog Group, Best Birth Center 2019 by Bay Area Parent Magazine

Ranking specialties, procedures and conditions
Based on expert assessment, the high performing specialties at Sequoia Hospital include abdominal aortic aneurysm repair, colon cancer surgery, heart bypass surgery and knee and hip replacements. The hospital also scores high marks in patient satisfaction and communication with doctors.

5. Alta Bates Summit Medical Center – Berkeley
2450 Ashby Avenue, Berkeley, CA Zip Code 94705-2067
Top Hospital Awards and Recognitions: Top 5 Best Hospitals in San Francisco Bay Area by US News & World Report, Cardiovascular Institute of Quality 2012 and Alameda County EMS Professional Partner Award.

Ranking specialties, procedures and conditions
This facility offers general elective medical and surgery services. The leading adult and children’s specialties are orthopedics, hip replacement, heart failure and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease.

6. Washington Hospital – Fremont
2000 Mowry Avenue, Fremont, CA Zip Code 94538-1746
Top Hospital Awards and Recognitions: Best Hospitals in California, Top Health Equality Hospital and Five Star Quality Award.

Ranking specialties, procedures and conditions
The high performing procedures and conditions at Washington Hospital, Fremont includes Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, heart failure and knee and hip replacement.

7. Stanford Healthcare – Valleycare in Pleasanton
5555 West Las Positas Boulevard – Pleasanton, CA Zip Code 94588-4000
Top Hospital Awards and Recognitions: Best Hospitals US News Health Report (2019 – 2020), Winner Vizient Quality Leadership Award 2019, Level 1 Trauma, NICHE Exemplar Status, Gold Medal US Department of Human Health Services

Ranking specialties, procedures and conditions
This general treatment and surgical center is ranked high in heart failure and hip and knee replacement. The facility also runs a vibrant neonatal ICU and offers weight control treatment services.

8. Mills-Peninsula Health Services – Burlingame
1501 Trousdale Drive – Burlingame, CA Zip Code 94010-3282
Top Hospital Awards and Recognitions: Family Favorite Hospital 2016 by Bay Parent Magazine and Stroke Gold Plus Award for excellent stroke care by the American Stroke Association (ASA) and American Heart Association (AMA).

Ranking specialties, procedures and conditions
The hospital offers Bariatric or weight control services and comprehensive in-patient and out-patient treatment services. The conditions and procedures with the highest level distinction include colon cancer surgery, knee replacement and heart failure treatment.

While GJEL Accident attorneys is a San Francisco Personal Injury Law Firm we do not endorse or recommend any particular hospital.

Why finding a good hospital is important?

Finding a good hospital comes with numerous benefits, including finding the best medical attention available for you or a love done and a peace of mind.

Although the proximity of a hospital is important, hospitals are not the same as some are more suited to deal with certain health issues compared to others. This scenario may force you to look for medical attention elsewhere. When performing a comprehensive hospital search, you need to look at the following pointers:

• Type of medical facility (i.e. specialty hospital, academic hospital, community hospital)
• Cost burden covered by the health system
• Hospital’s rate of infection and complications
• Expected out of pocket cost
• Overall patient satisfaction
• Hospital’s emergency handling capacity

How to choose the best hospitals in Bay Area For You and Your Family

The choice of health care is highly personalized. The decision can be influenced by the people close to you or the things you hold closest to your heart. Case in point is following recommendations from family, friends or doctor. The facilities that attract more positive mentions often receive the highest number of referrals. Hospitals can also influence patient decision using the information appearing on their websites. Although people tend to trust the word of mouth, the information appearing on the website can be used to appeal to a much wider audience. Here is a comprehensive Consumer Reports guide for finding best hospital:

1. Check the hospitals score on key issues

Hospital rankings and reviews often provide a general overview of what to expect when admitted. During your scrutiny of the hospital reviews always pay attention to the following measures:
• Patient experience – this is a broad measure that assesses patient’s recommendations and experiences on issues like pain control and communication with the care team.
• Hospital practices – the analysis broadly checks the utilization of electronic health records and devices like CRT scanners.
• Patient outcomes – patient outcomes matter a lot in the ratings matrix as it analyzes how hospitals work to prevent the occurrence of blood and surgical site infection.
• Safety scores – the score summarizes the pragmatic steps taken by hospitals to avoid readmissions, spread of infections and instances of mortality.

2. See what your insurance covers

Choosing the best hospitals in Bay Area to undergo a surgery or specialized treatment is always reassuring. When glossing over a list of hospitals, you also need to check the items covered by your medical insurance. Remember, there are certain out of pocket expenses you may be expected to carry. If suspect any errors in your medical bill, the first thing to do is call your insurance carrier. The insurer can also help you clarify the following key issues in your plan:
• List of hospitals and practicing doctors in the plan’s network
• Cost differential between in-network and out-of-network cost. This will help you clarify the deductibles and coinsurances.
• Check if the procedure you want to perform demands expert pre-authorization
Note: Although you may request clarification on the above issues over the phone, it is best to get a hard copy from the insurer. This will help you avoid future disputes. The requested report should bear a date and the name and contact of the person issuing the information.

3. Check doctor privileges

Ask to know if the caring physician or surgeon is offering admission privileges. Your primary care doctor can also refer you to physician approved by your medical insurance.

4. Hospital location

The proximity of hospital to where you live can help a lot in terms cost and emergencies. If the hospital you are referred is far away, you need to prepare yourself for the challenges that may arise. For instance, limited insurance coverage, isolated care and need to pay for travel and lodging.

Online Hospital Rating Resources

A number of hospital ranking and comparison sites have been setup to help you find the Best hospitals in San Francisco Bay Area. According to WebMD, the following rating sites will help you find a good hospital near you:

1. – Hospital Compare
The resource lists all Medicare certified hospitals under the zip codes or city you have provided. You also get to know whether the listed facilities offer emergency services. If you want to make hospital comparisons, you can choose up to three different facilities.

2. Healthgrades
The portal provides a list of hospitals in different localities, i.e. a city or town. Besides the location, the hospitals can be sorted by type of facility, location and health system. Being a rating site, Healthgrades analyzes Healthgrades awards and ratings for different procedures and conditions and offers an analysis of how the hospitals rank nationally.

The best hospital list on LeapFrogGroup covers rural hospitals, teaching hospitals and children’s hospitals. Users can compare up to three hospitals. The information available for cross reference includes; inpatient care and surgery, pediatric care, maternity care and infections, among other details. The portal is sponsored by a select group of top employers and aims to encourage transparency and public sensitization on health issues.

The site allows users to find hospitals based on region, size, facility ownership, type of hospital and health system. Results for state and national patient experience and quality of care are also shown. The items not covered in the Health Compare such as use of electronic records and population health measures are also listed. Users can also make hospital comparisons.

The Best Hospitals for Critical Care and ER services in San Francisco

When an emergency situation arises, the demand for convenient, quality and affordable care usually comes to mind. Almost all the best hospitals in San Francisco provide emergency services and critical care, where patients are closely attended to and monitored. Some large integrated hospital systems also operate specialty Post-Anesthesia Unit (PACU), Neurological Intensive Unit (NICU) and Trauma Intensive Care Unit (TICU) as part of emergency support services. Below are the largest and most efficient ER services in the San Francisco Bay Area:

UCSF Medical Center
505 Parnassus Avenue Inner Sunset
Phone: (415) 476 1000

Critical Care and ER Overview
UCSF Medical Center is a large academic hospital with over 6 treatment campuses spread across the San Francisco Bay Area. The original campus is the UCSF Helen Diller Medical Center in Parnassus Heights. The hospital’s emergency department caters for different critical care cases involving adults, teens and children. The critical care units include the neonatal ICU and Pediatric ICU.

Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center
1001 Potrero Avenue San Francisco, Building 25, First Floor
Phone: (628) 206 8000

Critical Care and ER Overview
Zuckerberg Hospital prides in being one of the few hospitals in the San Francisco and San Mateo region to earn a level 1 trauma center classification. The center has a team of trauma surgeons and specialist working around the clock. Some of the emergency facilities installed in the center include trauma suites, CT scanners, operating rooms and 58 beds that can be doubled when a disaster strikes. The emergency and urgent care units serve adults, teens and children. The adult urgent care services cover chronic illness management, specialist referrals and annual physicals.

Sutter Health
240 King Street Mission bay
Phone: (800) 972 5547

Critical Care and ER Overview
The treatment services offered at the facility include cardiovascular, orthopedics, pediatrics, women’s health, primary care and facility medicine. The multi-million dollar facility also has a rapid emergency unit that caters for patients with serious injuries and conditions, stroke and neurovascular issues, heart attack, trauma and pediatric emergencies. Sutter Health Network maintains a team of highly skilled doctor and nurses operating on the emergency rooms 24/7.

St Francisco Memorial Hospital
1649 Industrial Parkway West
Phone: (510) 780 9400

Critical Care and ER Overview
The center prides in offering quality professional care, short wait times and affordable services to all patients. St Francis Memorial Hospital runs an accredited urgent care wing and ER. The emergency service covers pregnancy bleeding and complications, near drowning, major head trauma, severe abdominal pain, uncontrolled bleeding and other life threatening cases.

Dignity Health at St Mary’s Medical Center
450 Stanyan Street, San Francisco, CA Zip Code 94117
Phone: (415) 750 5700

Critical Care and ER Overview
The emergency services at St Mary’s Medical Center takes care of critical health issues like trouble breathing, high fever, chest pain and bad stomachache. The ultra-modern ER center supports adult and children emergencies. The hospital’s urgent care is a venture between Dignity Health and GoHealth Urgent Care.

Carbon Health
1998 Market Street Hayes Valley
Phone: (415) 792 6040

Critical Care and ER Overview
This modern health institution emphasizes the use of modern technology to advance primary health goals and urgent care experience. The Carbon Health facilities that offer urgent acre are located on various campuses, including the Spanish Spring, Northwest Reno and North Valleys. The emergency conditions covered include back pain, abdominal pain, poison ivy/oak, concussions and cuts and injuries.

City Bay Urgent Care
2131 Irving Street Outer Sunset
Phone: (415) 521 2449

Critical Care and ER Overview
The City Bay urgent care center operates like a primary care facility since it offers occupational medicine, women’s needs and vaccinations. The other services include rapid lab tests, on-site x-rays and prescription medications. Patients experiencing shortness of breath, chest pain and life-threatening conditions are given immediate attention when they arrive at the facility.


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Andy Gillin

Andy Gillin received his Bachelor’s Degree from the University of California at Berkeley and his law degree from the University of Chicago. He is the managing partner of GJEL Accident Attorneys and has written and lectured in the field of plaintiffs’ personal injury law for numerous organizations. Andy is a highly recognized wrongful death lawyer in California.