Published on December 11, 2020

The Watson Health™ 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals logoFortune and IBM Watson Health Recognize NMMC Among Top-Performing U.S. Cardiovascular Hospitals

TUPELO, Miss.—North Mississippi Medical Center has made the 2021 Fortune/IBM Watson Health 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals list, naming the top-performing U.S. hospitals for inpatient cardiovascular services.

This year’s study included 980 U.S. hospitals with cardiovascular services. Based on comparisons between the study winners and a peer group of similar hospitals in the study, the winners delivered better outcomes while operating more efficiently and at a lower cost. Extrapolating the results of this year’s study, if all Medicare inpatients received the same level of care as those treated in the award-winning facilities more than 7,000 additional lives and over $1.6 billion could be saved annually, and more than 5,000 additional bypass and angioplasty patients could be complication-free. The list of the top cardiovascular hospitals was published by Fortune.

“Heart disease still remains the leading cause of death for all Americans and has a disproportionate impact on communities of color, rural populations and other underserved groups. In this light, cardiovascular care with an emphasis on health equity is essential,” said Kyu Rhee, chief health officer with IBM Watson Health. “The exceptional organizations on the Fortune/IBM Watson Health 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals list are setting the standard for high quality, efficient, patient-centric care for heart disease. We believe that these top institutions are leading the effort to enhance and evolve the way we treat and prevent this disease.”

Compared to similar cardiovascular hospitals, this year’s 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals winners had better results on indicators intended to measure clinical outcomes, clinical processes, operational efficiency and financial performance. These measures evaluate inpatient and 30-day mortality, patient complications, 30-day readmission, average length of stay, 30-day episode-of-care payment, and adjusted cost per case, for acute myocardial infarction (AMI), coronary artery bypass graft (CABG), percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) and heart failure (HF) patients.

“The IBM Watson Health Top 50 award reflects the hard work and dedication of NMMC’s cardiovascular team,” said T.J. Adams, NMMC vice president for Cardiovascular and Surgical Services. “The award illustrates the dedication of our staff and providers in providing the best cardiovascular care in the region. Patients do not have to travel to big cities and out of state for the best cardiovascular care; the best cardiovascular care is located here at North Mississippi Medical Center.”

NMMC’s heart program dates back to 1980 when the hospital received a certificate of need to perform heart catheterization and open heart procedures. Today NMMC’s Heart and Vascular Institute is backed by the expertise of four cardiothoracic surgeons, 16 cardiologists and a network of internal medicine and family physicians, as well as other specialists and providers. Located on the second and third floors of NMMC’s East Tower, the Heart and Vascular Institute is home to four state-of-the-art cardiac catheterization labs, three electrophysiology labs, and labs for echocardiography and nuclear studies. NMMC offers advanced cardiac treatment procedures, as well as cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation services to help patients rebound physically and emotionally.

For more information about NMMC’s Heart and Vascular Institute, call 1-800-THE DESK (1-800-843-3375) or visit

The Watson Health™ 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals study is based on quantitative research that uses a balanced scorecard approach, based on publicly available data, to identify the top cardiovascular hospitals in the U.S. To determine the cardiovascular hospitals included on the Fortune/IBM Watson Health 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals list, IBM Watson Health researchers evaluated 980 short-term, acute care, non-federal U.S. hospitals that treat a broad spectrum of cardiology patients. It includes patients requiring medical management, as well as those who receive invasive or surgical procedures. Because multiple measures are used, a hospital must provide all forms of cardiovascular care, including open heart surgery, to be included in the study.

All research was based on the following public data sets: Medicare cost reports, Medicare Provider Analysis and Review (MEDPAR) data, and Hospital Compare data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Hospital Compare website. Hospitals do not apply for awards, and winners do not pay to market this honor. For more information, visit

About IBM Watson Health

IBM Watson Health is a data, analytics, and technology partner for the health industry. Supported by the innovation of IBM and intelligence of Watson, we are committed to helping build smarter health ecosystems. Through the combination of our deep industry expertise in health, data and analytics, actionable insights, and reputation for security and trust, Watson Health is working together with its clients and partners to help them achieve simpler processes, better care insights, faster breakthroughs, and improved experiences for people around the world. Learn more at

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