1. Olsen, Douglas P. PhD, RN

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Last year, HealthGrades, an organization that tracks health care quality, found that the Great Lakes region had the highest concentration of top-ranked hospitals of any area in the U.S. Based on the 2000 U.S. census figures, the region, which included Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin, had one distinguished hospital for every 773,181 residents.


This year, U.S. News and World Report released its list of the top hospitals in the United States. Four were in the Midwest: at number 2 was Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota; number 3 was the Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio; at number 8 was Barnes and Jewish HospitalWashington University, St. Louis; and the University of Michigan Hospitals and Health System, in Ann Arbor, Michigan, was number 12. In the Heart and Heart Surgery Specialties catagory, Cleveland Clinic is ranked first and Mayo is ranked second.


U.S. News and World Report's rankings considered two factors that pertain directly to nurses: nursing ratios (full-time or full-time equivalent nurses per patients) and whether a facility had earned the American Nurses Credentialing Center's Magnet designation. Mayo Clinic, Cleveland Clinic, and Barnes and Jewish Hospitals are all Magnet Hospitals.


This trend towards Magnet status is taking off in the region. Ohio has 13 Magnet facilities, including Cleveland Clinic; Indiana has five; Michigan has one; Illinois has 11; Wisconsin has five; Minnesota has two, including Mayo Clinic; Iowa has four; and Missouri has seven, including Barnes and Jewish.


These hospitals and others in the Midwest present some excellent opportunities for nurses, whether seasoned veterans or new graduates. Although right now the nursing shortage is not as acute in the Midwest as it is in other regions, there are still spot shortages and needs for nurses in certain in specialties and off-shifts positions.


Your Guide to Job Opportunities in the Midwestern States

Department of Veterans Affairs 810 Vermont Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20420 Contact: Stuart Gilman, MD, MPH (562) 826-5323 Fax: (562) 826-5932 E-mail: Web site:


St. James Hospital and Health Centers 1423 Chicago Rd. Chicago Heights, IL 60411 Contact: Margie Lim, HR Recruiter (708) 756-1000, ext. 6003 Fax: (708) 709-6941 E-mail: Web site:


Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare Racine, WI Contact: Angela Tille (262) 687-4545 E-mail: Web site: