Impact of Date Stamping on Patient Safety Measurement in Patients Undergoing CABG

Experience with the AHRQ Patient Safety Indicators

Published In: BMC Health Services Research, Aug. 13, 2008, p. 1-8

Posted on RAND.org on August 13, 2008

by Laurent G. Glance, Yue Li, Turner M. Osler, Dana B. Mukamel, Andrew W. Dick

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BACKGROUND: The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) Patient Safety Indicators (PSIs) provide information on hospital risk-adjusted rates for potentially preventable adverse events. Although designed to work with routine administrative data, it is unknown whether the PSIs can accurately distinguish between complications and pre-existing conditions. The objective of this study is to examine whether the AHRQ PSIs accurately measure hospital complication rates, using the data with present-on-admission (POA) codes to distinguish between complications and preexisting conditions. METHODS: Retrospective cohort study of patients undergoing isolated CABG surgery in California conducted using the 1998-2000 California State Inpatient Database. The authors calculated the positive predictive value of selected AHRQ PSIs using information from the POA as the gold standard, and the intra-class correlation coefficient to assess the level of agreement between the hospital risk-adjusted PSI rates with and without the information contained in the POA modifier. RESULTS: The false positive error rate, defined as one minus the positive predictive value, was greater than or equal to 20% for four of the eight PSIs examined: decubitus ulcer, failure-to-rescue, postoperative physiologic and metabolic derangement, and postoperative pulmonary embolism or deep venous thrombosis. Pairwise comparison of the hospital risk-adjusted PSI rates, with and without POA information, demonstrated almost perfect agreement for five of the eight PSI's. For decubitus ulcer, failure-to-rescue, and postoperative pulmonary embolism or DVT, the intraclass-correlation coefficient ranged between 0.63 to 0.79. CONCLUSION: For some of the AHRQ Patient Safety Indicators, there are significant differences in the risk-adjusted rates of adverse events depending on whether the POA indicator is used to distinguish between pre-existing conditions and complications. The use of the POA indicator will increase the accuracy of the AHRQ PSIs as measures of adverse outcomes.

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