Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital has been re-designated as a Magnet hospital by the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC). The program distinguishes health care organizations that meet rigorous standards for nursing excellence and is the highest national honor for the professional nursing practice.


“The Magnet recognition isn’t just an award or prize, but an indicator of high performance,” said Barbara Quandt, chief nursing officer of Houston Methodist Willowbrook. “For patients, the Magnet recognition means the very best care, delivered by nurses supported by the entire facility to be the very best that they can be.”


Studies show that Magnet hospitals offer a higher quality of care, safer environments and improved clinical outcomes. According to a 2002 survey by Gallup, cited in American Nurse Today, nurses at Magnet facilities are more engaged with patients, resulting in better patient outcomes. The survey also found that Magnet facilities have higher nurse-to-patient ratios, which correlates with fewer complications, lower mortality rates and shorter hospital stays for patients. There’s also stronger communication between staff, which reduces preventable errors.


The Magnet Recognition Program designates organizations worldwide where nursing leaders successfully align their nursing strategic goals to improve the organization’s patient outcomes. For nurses, the Magnet recognition brings education and development through every career stage. Research shows at Magnet facilities there is a higher percentage of satisfied RNs with less turnover and vacancies.  


Houston Methodist Willowbrook was originally designated as a Magnet hospital in 2013. Organizations must reapply every four years and provide documented evidence to demonstrate how staff members sustained and improved Magnet concepts, performance and quality. The ANCC evaluates applicants across various components and dimensions to gauge an organization’s nursing excellence. These include the quality of nursing leadership and coordination and collaboration across specialties, as well as processes for measuring and improving the quality and delivery of care.


“Magnet is not just a nursing designation. It’s a hospital designation,” said Keith Barber, chief executive officer, Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital and senior vice president, Houston Methodist. “You can’t be a Magnet facility if the administration, physicians or other disciplines don’t support the nursing team. It really takes a full team effort to be a Magnet facility. We strive to be Magnet all the time.”


Click here for more information about the ANCC Magnet Recognition Program.