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Awards & Recognitions

Awards & Recognitions

University Health has earned many awards and recognitions in its over-100-year history. We are proud to offer you the highest quality health care, founded on respect and empathy. These awards and recognitions serve as proof of our commitment to our San Antonio community.

Nursing Staff

Magnet Recognized

Magnet ANCC LogoUniversity Health is recognized as a three-time Magnet health care organization by the American Nurses Credentialing Center. As a Magnet hospital, University Health attracts the best and brightest health care talent from around the nation. This gives you the peace of mind that you are being cared for by a team with a proven track record of success.

The American Nurses Credentialing Center specifically praised:

  • University Health’s Nurse Residency Program
  • Nurse Family Partnership Program
  • Nursing participation on the University Health ethics committee

The American Nurses Credentialing Center first recognized University Health in 2010 and renewed the designation in November 2020 for another four years. Only 8% of hospitals in the U.S. enjoy this recognition.


PRISM AwardUniversity Hospital’s 12 MSU and 10th Floor Sky Tower nursing units were awarded the PRISM Award. PRISM stands for Premier Recognition In the Specialty of Med-surg.

This award was presented by:

  • The Academy of Medical-Surgical Nurses
  • Medical-Surgical Nursing Certification Board

Our nursing units exhibited:

  • Leadership
  • Recruitment and retention of effective staff members
  • Care based on evidence
  • Positive patient outcomes
  • Positive work environment
  • Continual education of unit nurses

When a medical-surgical nurse at University Health cares for you, you can be certain you are getting trusted, awarded care.

Beacon Award for Excellence

Beacon Award of ExcellenceThe medical intensive care unit nursing staff earned the silver Beacon Award for Excellence from the American Association of Critical Care Nurses.

This award recognizes our ICU nursing staff for:

  • Leadership structures
  • Hiring and retaining quality nursing talent
  • Effectively communicating in an ICU environment
  • Providing care based on evidence
  • Measuring patient outcomes

Patient Care

Level I Trauma Center

Level I Trauma Center certifiedUniversity Hospital and University Children’s Hospital are Level I trauma centers.

  • Certified by the American College of Surgeons Committee on Trauma
  • Specialists on-hand 24/7 to treat any injury

Level I status provides you with:

  • General surgeons available 24 hours
  • Specialty surgeons like orthopedic, neurosurgery, radiology, oral and internal medicine available 24 hours
  • Education in the San Antonio community about injury prevention
  • Substance abuse screening and intervention programs
  • Referrals for resources in surrounding communities

We can provide the highest quality care to children and adults across a 22-county region of South Texas.

Most Wired awardLEVEL 10 MOST WIRED

University Health is the first and only health organization in Texas be certified as a Level 10 Most Wired health system by the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME). Level 10 is the highest certification possible.

The Most Wired certification comes following a rigorous evaluation of University Health’s adoption, integration and impact of technology. From electronic health records to online patient portals, University Health is at the forefront of improving outcomes for patients with digital tools.

Certified Comprehensive Stroke Center

Stroke CertificationThe Joint Commission and the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association certified University Health as a comprehensive stroke center. As a comprehensive stroke center, we can provide:

  • Treatment for the most complex stroke cases
  • Specialized diagnostic options
  • Advanced treatment options
  • Dedicated neuroscience ICU
  • Staff trained specifically to treat stroke patients

University Health also works with other comprehensive stroke centers across the U.S. to set an example for stroke care.

Level IV Epilepsy Center

The South Texas Comprehensive Epilepsy Center is the only Level IV epilepsy center in San Antonio. This is made possible by a partnership between University Health and UT Health San Antonio.

Level IV is the highest designation for an epilepsy center and was awarded by the National Association of Epilepsy Centers.

As a Level IV epilepsy center, we can provide:

  • Complex diagnostic and treatment options
  • A broad range of surgical procedures
  • Advanced medical, dietary, and surgical therapies
  • Inpatient and outpatient diagnostic tests
  • The opportunity to take part in clinical trials 

Level IV Maternal Facility 

University Hospital is San Antonio’s first Level IV Maternity Center. The Texas Department of State Health Services awarded University Health this distinction, the highest a health facility can earn. 

As a Level IV maternal facility, you can count on us to provide critical services including: 

  • Early detection and diagnosis for conditions that may put a pregnant woman at risk
  • Continuing education opportunities for our maternal medical staff
  • The capability to perform major surgery onsite
  • Critical care physicians onsite to work with maternal fetal medicine physicians and/or obstetrics and gynecology physicians on complex cases

Level IV Neonatal Intensive Care Unit

The Texas Department State Health Services also recognized University Hospital as a Level IV Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. As a Level IV NICU, we can provide necessary services for you and your baby, including:

  • Comprehensive care of critically ill infants of all gestational ages 
  • The capability to perform onsite surgery at any time, including emergency C-section
  • Pediatric surgical subspecialists available to consult with families onsite 
  • Perinatal and neonatal nutritionists who can plan a diet to meet your baby’s needs

Cribs for kids - safe sleep hospital awardNational Certified Safe Sleep Hospital

University Hospital is officially recognized as a Cribs for Kids National Bronze Certified Safe Sleep Hospital. The Cribs for Kids® National Safe Sleep Hospital Certification program awards recognition to hospitals that demonstrate a commitment to reducing infant, sleep-related deaths by promoting and educating on best safe sleep practices.

As a Nationally Certified Safe Sleep Hospital, University Hospital is recognized for following the safe sleep guidelines recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and providing training programs for health care team members and family caregivers.

Age-Friendly Health System

Age-Friendly Health SystemThe Institute for Healthcare Improvement recognizes University Hospital as an Age-Friendly Health System. University Health earned this award by aligning our patient care with the Institute's four Ms: 

  • What Matters: Tailoring our care to each individual’s preferences and goals, including end-of-life care
  • Medication: Using age-friendly medication that does not interfere with the older adult’s preferences, mobility or mental acuity
  • Mentation: Identifying, preventing and treating signs of mental decline, like dementia and depression
  • Mobility: Helping older adults stay mobile and keep doing what matters

We are proud to provide evidence-based, compassionate care for adults of all ages at University Health.

Age-Friendly Health Systems is an initiative of The John A. Hartford Foundation and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement in partnership with the American Hospital Association and the Catholic Health Association of the United States.

U.S. News & World Report

University Hospital and University Children’s Hospital consistently ranks in U.S. News & World Report’s Best Hospitals. In 2020, University Hospital ranked #19 in Texas.

In 2020, University Hospital ranked “High performing” in:

  • Colon cancer surgery
  • Heart failure care
  • Heart bypass surgery

University Hospital also scored “Excellent” in:

  • Advanced cancer, nephrology, neurology and urology technologies
  • Cancer, nephrology, rehabilitation and urology patient services
  • Discharging patients to home after cancer treatment

You can be confident that your health care team has the experience and ability to treat you and your family, no matter what you are facing.

Stroke Gold Plus Achievement Award

Get with the guidelines gold plus awardUniversity Health earned the American Heart Association and American Stroke Association’s “Get With the Guidelines – Stroke Gold Plus” and “Target: Stroke & Type 2 Diabetes Honor Roll Elite” awards.

This recognition means that our team of doctors and nurses went above and beyond in treating people with strokes. Our medical staff consistently administered medicine to dissolve clots and improve blood flow for people with strokes.

If you have a stroke, you can trust University Health to provide the most streamlined, efficient care in San Antonio.

American Heart Association Excellence in Heart Care

American Heart Association Mission LifeLine AwardIn 2017, University Health was recognized by the American Heart Association as a Mission: Lifeline STEMI Receiving Center – Silver Achievement Award hospital. This award recognizes our dedication to providing you with the latest treatment options for better outcomes after a heart attack.

Certified Cardiac Rehabilitation

Cardiac Rehab AACVPR CertificationThe American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation certified University Health’s cardiovascular rehabilitation program. This certification recognizes the quality of care provided when you enter our Reeves Rehabilitation Center.

Palliative Care Certification

Palliative Care Certification Joint CommissionUniversity Health is certified in providing palliative care from The Joint Commission. We are the third health care organization in Texas to achieve this.

Palliative care involves:

  • A team of doctors, nurses and specialists who relieve your pain
  • A holistic approach to improving your quality of life
  • Caring for your physical, emotional, spiritual and social needs

This award recognizes University Health’s excellence in being able to provide palliative care to patients of all ages.

MI Registry Platinum Performance Achievement Award

MI Registry Chest Pain awardUniversity Health has received the American College of Cardiology’s NCDR Chest Pain – MI Registry Platinum Performance Achievement Award for 2021. We are proud to be one of only 212 hospitals nationwide to earn this recognition.
The designation means University Health provides a higher standard of care for heart attack patients and signifies that our team has reached an aggressive goal of treating these patients following the science-based national guidelines outlined by the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association. 
To receive the Chest Pain – MI Registry Platinum Performance Achievement Award, University Health has demonstrated sustained achievement for two consecutive years (2019 and 2020).

Antimicrobial Stewardship Program – Pharmacy

Antimicrobial Stewardship Program – PharmacyUniversity Health pharmacies implemented the Antimicrobial Stewardship Program in 2019. This initiative aligns with the Texas Department of State Health Services’ goal of improving patient outcomes by using antimicrobials. 

The mission of University Health’s Antimicrobial Stewardship Program is to promote optimal patient care and reduce the likelihood of antimicrobial resistance by using evidence-based guidance for the effective, safe and judicious use of antimicrobials.

American Association for Respiratory Care APEX Recognition Award

The University Health Pediatric Critical Care Transport Team earned the Apex Recognition Award in January 2021. The American Association for Respiratory Care recognizes health facilities that have shown an elite level of respiratory care, therapy and education.

Our Pediatric Critical Care Transport Team was among the first two transport teams to earn this distinction from the AARC. 

ELSO Gold Level Award of Excellence in Life Support

ELSO Gold Level Award of Excellence in Life SupportThe Extracorporeal Life Support Organization (ELSO) awarded University Health the 2020 Gold Award for Excellence in Life Support. University Health scored the highest level in the following categories:

  • Promoting the mission of ELSO
  • Promoting the vision of ELSO
  • Promoting the activities of ELSO

This distinction guarantees that family members on life support benefit from only evidence-based processes.

Gage Award for Teen Health

University Health earned the Gage Award from America’s Essential Hospitals. This award recognizes the excellent care provided by our Adolescent Health program. Through this program, San Antonio teens benefit from:

  • Adolescent vaccines like HPV
  • STD testing
  • Family planning services
  • Home visits for teen moms
  • As one of only two hospitals nationally to receive this award, University Health strives to provide South Texas teens with the resources they need to make healthy choices

American College of Surgeons’ Commission on Cancer

American College of Surgeons Commission on CancerUniversity Health’s cancer programs are accredited by the American College of Surgeons’ Commission on Cancer. This guarantees that you are always at the center of your cancer care journey.

This accreditation recognizes University Health’s:

  • Range of cancer care services
  • Ability to accurately diagnose cancer
  • Patient-focused treatment options
  • Rehabilitation services after treatment
  • Commitment to supporting patients during and after treatment

CenteringPregnancy Program

Centering Pregnancy ProgramUniversity Health is the only non-military health system in San Antonio to offer the CenteringPregnancy program. We have been approved by the Centering Healthcare Institution to provide this.

CenteringPregnancy brings together 8-10 women with similar due dates to support each other in their pregnancies.

This program includes:

  • Prescheduled doctor’s appointments
  • Prenatal care from a dedicated provider
  • 2 hours to speak with a health care provider at each visit
  • One-on-one education about diet, exercise, breastfeeding and more
  • Tour of our birthing facilities

Center of Excellence

University Health has been recognized as a Center of Excellence by the following health plans and organizations:

  • Aetna
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield Association
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas
  • LifeTrac
  • Optum Health
  • Superior Health Plan

Employee Excellence

2021 Top Workplaces Award – San Antonio Express-News

2021 Top Work Places Award – San Antonio Express-NewsUniversity Health is recognized as one of San Antonio’s top workplaces by the San Antonio Express-News. A top workplace values innovation and continually focuses on improvement. These organizations attract, recruit and retain the best and brightest in their fields.

University Health employees supplied feedback about workplace culture to secure this award. Our employees completed an independent and confidential survey evaluating:

  • University Health’s values and cooperation
  • Employee engagement, retention and productivity
  • Confidence in company leaders
  • Employee appreciation
  • Pay, benefits, training, expectations

BEST Award from the Association for Talent Development

Best Learning Workplace AwardIn 2020, University Health received the BEST Award from the Association for Talent Development. This award recognizes our employee development programs. Through Learning Central, employees can access courses such as:

  • Social media in the health care workplace
  • Stages of labor
  • Lower back pain in children
  • Geriatric health issues

Our employees’ devotion to self-improvement guarantees that you will get the most thoughtful, advanced care in the region.

LearningElite Gold Award

LearningElite awardIn 2016, University Health earned the LearningElite Gold Award from the Chief Learning Officer Magazine. This award recognizes the high-quality employee development programs available at University Health.

Our employees’ commitment to continued learning and self-improvement ensures that you always get the highest-quality care.

Healthy Workplace Recognition Program – Gold

Healthy Workplace SABGHUniversity Health earned gold-level recognition from the Healthy Workplace Recognition Program of the San Antonio Business Group on Health and the Mayor’s Fitness Council.

This award recognizes University Health’s commitment to improving the health and well-being of its employees.

University Health exhibited:

  • Senior management support for wellness programs
  • A company culture that encourages health and wellness
  • Health education programs available to employees
  • Healthy options available in workplace cafeterias and cafes
  • Smoking cessation programs available to employees

Talent Development for Good Award

Talent Development for Good AwardUniversity Health Center for Learning Excellence team earned the new Talent Development for Good award by the Association for Talent and Development (ATD).

The team was recognized for their ability to pivot and make significant changes due to the pandemic. In particular, the team was honored for the transformational and positive changes they made in people’s lives in 2020.

The ATD is the world’s largest association dedicated to those who develop talent in organizations. These professionals help others achieve their full potential by improving their knowledge, skills and abilities.

Construction & Environment

Air Quality Stewardship Award

Air Quality Stewardship AwardIn 2016, the Air Improvement Resources Committee of the Alamo Area Council of Governments awarded University Health the Air Quality Stewardship Award. This award recognized the hospital’s Sky Tower’s efficient electricity use, which reduced nitrogen oxide emissions.

The Sky Tower also received:

  • LEED New Construction v2.2 Gold
  • LEED BD+C Certified Gold

LEED Gold Award

LEED Gold awardUniversity Health has earned the LEED Gold Certification for environmentally friendly design twice – for Robert B. Green and for the Sky Tower.

In 2015, the Sky Tower achieved environmentally friendly design by:

  • Reducing potable water use by 30%
  • Capturing rain water for irrigation
  • Reducing energy costs by 22%
  • Ensuring that 95% of on-site construction waste did not go to a landfill
  • Using more than 1/3 of recycled construction materials

International Organization for Standardization

University Health is certified by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) – making us the first health care system in the world to achieve this. This standardization ensures quality, safety and efficiency of hospital management.

Associated General Contractors of Texas – Outstanding Construction Awards

In 2014, the University Health Capital Improvement Program earned first place in the large health care project category in the 2014 Associated General Contractors (AGC) of Texas Outstanding Construction awards program.

Esperanza Award

University Health earned the Esperanza Award from the Hispanic Contractors Association. This award recognizes University Health’s efforts to promote diversity in its planning and execution of construction projects.

Zachry Vaughn Layton, the University Health Capital Improvement Program contractor, also earned recognition for its commitment to diversity on the Sky Tower project.

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