Five websites that help you find the best hospital

What do you do when you have just received a serious medial diagnosis and have to decide which hospital to use? In most cases, you'll depend solely on your doctor's recommendation, but you want to be sure you'll get the best care. If you have a few options or you still need to find a specialist, how do you go about finding the right specialist and hospital near you?

Luckily, a number of websites can help you research both the hospitals and specialties at which they excel. Here are five of the top websites for hospital and other health care reviews:

Joint Commission

My favorite is the one run by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Health Care Organizations, which provides the most comprehensive listing of health care organizations available today. The Joint Commission goes in to health care organizations periodically to check the quality at each hospital it certifies. Its website now lists both Joint Commission-accredited and certified health organizations, as well as health care organizations not accredited or certified by the Joint Commission.