French Hospital Medical Center and Marian Regional Medical Center Named Nation’s Best Maternity Hospitals by Newsweek

The facilities are among only 32 in the Nation to have earned this distinction

CENTRAL COAST – May 26, 2022 – Newsweek just announced the 161 hospitals nationwide that received the prestigious Best Maternity Hospitals 2022, and the list included French Hospital Medical Center and Marian Regional Medical Center. The hospitals are among only 32 in California to be recognized, and French Hospital Medical Center is the only in San Luis Obispo County. The distinction recognizes facilities that have excelled in providing care to mothers, newborns and their families, as verified by the 2020 Leapfrog Hospital Survey. Best Maternity Care Hospitals is part of Newsweek, powered by data from The Leapfrog Group.

“French Hospital Medical Center and Marian Regional Medical Center have been national leaders in the area of perinatal safety are committed to providing the highest level of quality and excellence for expectant mothers and their babies, and this award is indicative of our standards,” says Medical Director of Maternal/ Fetal Medicine for Dignity Health Central Coast, Laurence Shields, MD. “Expectant mothers preparing for the birth of their baby can be confident about the exceptional care our birthing centers provide.”

Hospitals named as a Best Maternity Care Hospital have fully met The Leapfrog Group’s standards for maternity care on evidence-based, nationally standardized metrics. The tough standards have been established by Leapfrog’s national expert panel. This includes lower rates of early elective delivery, NTSV C-section, and episiotomy, as well as compliance with process measures including newborn bilirubin screening prior to discharge and blood clot prevention techniques for mothers delivering via C-section.

“Best Maternity Care Hospitals are an elite group of hospitals from across the country,” said Nancy Cooper, Editor in Chief of Newsweek. “These facilities are to be commended for the care they provide to women and families, and for giving babies a strong start to life. Particularly in these uncertain times, we are honored to share this list of top-ranked facilities with Newsweek’s readership.”

At French Hospital Medical Center’s Stollmeyer Family Birthing Center, the expanded center contains eight private birthing suites, with each room offering labor, delivery, recovery and postpartum services to patients all in the same space. In addition, the unit boasts a C-section suite directly inside the center, for the comfort and ease of our patients. The Acute Care Nursery offers advanced neonatal care, and in the coming years, the new French Hospital expansion will include a 16-bed NICU to serve the most fragile patients. 

Marian Regional Medical Center’s Maternal and Newborn Center offers 24/7 obstetrics services, and dedicated obstetrics anesthesiologists, as well as the support of an entire team of physicians, nurses, respiratory therapists, and NICU staff with experience and expertise, ready to manage any situation that may arise. The modern delivery rooms are equipped with the latest technology needed to support any birth along with the amenities to help make your stay comfortable. Marian’s 21-bed NICU offers board-certified neonatologists and staff are highly-trained to care for critically-ill or premature babies.


About Dignity Health Central Coast
Dignity Health Central Coast comprises five award-winning hospitals, all recognized for their quality of care, safety and service, primary care offices, premier ambulatory surgery centers, and technologically advanced imaging centers, outpatient services, and comprehensive home health services. Each hospital is supported by an active philanthropic Foundation to provide additional funding to support new programs and services, as well as to advance the community’s access to health care.  For more information, visit

About French Hospital Medical Center
French Hospital Medical Center is a state-of-the-art, 112-bed acute care hospital located in San Luis Obispo, California. French’s Oppenheimer Family Center for Emergency Medicine is the area’s most advanced emergency services center. The modern facility is home to the Copeland, Forbes, and Rossi Cardiac Care Center, is the county’s premier cardiac center, providing the latest cardiac and imaging technology, and the Hearst Cancer Resource Center offering free education, resources and support to cancer patients and their families. 

French Hospital Medical Center together with Arroyo Grande Community Hospital in Arroyo Grande, and Marian Regional Medical Center in Santa Maria, make up Dignity Health Central Coast, a network of hospitals, physicians, and outpatient services including physician offices, ambulatory surgery centers, technologically-advanced laboratories and imaging centers, and a full service home health agency. To learn more, visit