Awards and Recognition

Awards and Recognition

US News and World Report badge with text saying Best Children's Hospital Ranked in 4 Specialties 2017-2018 on a blue background.

Penn State Children’s Hospital is routinely ranked among the best children’s hospitals in the nation due to our focus on patient care, safety and research.

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Penn State Children’s Hospital has earned special recognition from the American College of Surgeons (ACS) for providing excellent surgical care. The hospital is one of eight in the nation – and the only one in Pennsylvania – to be named a Level 1 Children’s Surgery Center as part of the ACS’s Children’s Surgery Verification Program.

Best Childrens Hospitals 2015-16U.S. News and World Report Best Children's Hospital

The Children’s Hospital is proud to be included in U.S.News & World Report’s Best Children’s Hospitals 2020-21 list, ranking in three specialties:

  • Cancer
  • Cardiology and heart surgery
  • Neonatology
  • Nephrology
  • Pulmonology

Learn more about our U.S. News rankings

Level 1 Children’s Surgery Center

Penn State Children’s Hospital was designated a Level 1 Children’s Surgery Center by the American College of Surgeons (ACS) - the highest level awarded. The hospital is one of just eight in the nation - and the only one in Pennsylvania - to achieve this designation through the ACS Children’s Surgery Verification Program.

This three-year accreditation means that we met essential criteria for staffing, training and facility infrastructure, as well as protocols for care, ensuring that the Children’s Hospital is able to handle the specific needs of young patients. This includes the presence of children’s surgical and medical specialists, pediatric anesthesiologists and pediatric emergency physicians, all of whom are prepared to handle the specific needs of children. Such hospitals also must provide surgical care across multiple specialties, including procedures for complex diseases and major congenital anomalies.

Learn more about our Level 1 Surgery Center designation

Highest level of trauma care

Since 1993, the Children’s Hospital has been accredited by the Pennsylvania Trauma Systems Foundation as the only Level I Pediatric Trauma Center in south central Pennsylvania. Level I trauma centers have earned the highest designation available for their capabilities and expertise in treating a high volume of acute injuries.

Pediatric specialists are available 24/7 to deliver immediate treatment to severely injured children. Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center is also the only Level I Trauma Center for both adult and pediatric patients in this region, which means that if a family is involved in an accident or other traumatic injury, both children and adults can be treated at the same facility.

Learn more about our Pediatric Trauma Center

Society of Thoracic Surgeons Three-Star Rating

The Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) awarded Penn State Children’s Heart Group a three-star rating for congenital heart surgery - the highest designation available. The international nonprofit organization represents cardiothoracic surgeons, researchers and other health care professionals.

The latest STS report is based on national data over a four-year period, from July 2013 to June 2017, and includes most of the congenital heart surgery programs in the U.S. The Children’s Hospital is one of 11 in the nation to receive a three-star rating.


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