Published on November 16, 2020

UNC REX Named One of the Nation’s 50 Top Cardiovascular Hospitals by IBM Watson Health

Recognition based on factors such as mortality, complications, readmissions and cost

Award SealRALEIGH, N.C.
– Nov. 17, 2020 – UNC REX Healthcare’s N.C. Heart & Vascular Hospital has been named to Fortune and IBM Watson Health’s 2021 list of the nation’s top 50 Cardiovascular Hospitals. It's one of several recent honors received by UNC REX for its care and treatment of heart and vascular patients.

IBM Watson Health and Fortune magazine ranked heart hospitals based on measures such as mortality, complications, readmissions, length of stay, cost and other factors. The study found that found that winners delivered better outcomes while operating more efficiently and at a lower cost. This is the fourth straight year UNC REX made the list. Hospitals do not apply to participate in the ranking, or pay to be included. Fortune and IBM Watson used publicly available data on nearly 1,000 hospitals to rank the top 50.

The IBM Watson study found that if all cardiovascular hospitals performed at the same level of this year’s winners, more than 7,000 additional lives could be saved, 5,000 more heart patients could be complication-free and over $1.6 billion could be saved every year.

“This recognition reflects the hard work and compassion of our physicians and co-workers, who have made the N.C. Heart & Vascular Hospital a national center for excellent care,” said Ernie Bovio, President of UNC REX. “Heart disease hasn’t disappeared during the pandemic, and we are proud to provide the best cardiovascular care for all of our patients and their families.”

“UNC REX is proud to have received this award every year since the N.C. Heart & Vascular Hospital opened,” said Dr. Ravish Sachar, Physician-in-Chief of the Heart and Vascular Service Line at UNC REX. “This award reflects the strong collaboration between providers, administrators and coworkers that supports the outstanding care we provide every day.”

In addition, the N.C Heart & Vascular Hospital has been named a 2020 Guardian of Excellence Award winner by Press Ganey, a consulting firm that develops and analyzes patient satisfaction surveys for health systems. The Guardian of Excellence Award recognizes top-performing health organizations that have achieved the 95th percentile or above for performance in Patient Experience.

Also, the N.C. Heart & Vascular co-workers received the 2020 Chest Pain – MI Registry Platinum Performance Achievement Award from the American College of Cardiology. That honor recognizes a hospital’s success in implementing a higher standard of care for heart attack patients by meeting aggressive performance measures.

“We are very proud of these recognitions from several national organizations,” said Dr. R. Lee Jobe, a cardiologist and Medical Director of the Cardiac Cath Lab at UNC REX. “They underscore our commitment at UNC REX to provide the highest quality cardiac care and latest innovations for our patients, for the best possible outcomes.” 

For more information about the Fortune and IBM Watson study, visit


About UNC REX Healthcare

For 125 years, UNC REX Healthcare has provided expert care for the Wake County community and surrounding areas. With more than 7,400 co-workers, UNC REX is a private, not-for-profit health care system and is a member of UNC Health Care. UNC REX provides various health care services throughout Wake County with facilities in Apex, Cary, Garner, Holly Springs, Knightdale, Wakefield and downtown Raleigh. To learn more, click here.