Evolution of the Surgeon-Volume, Patient-Outcome Relationship
ABSTRACT Higher surgeon volume is associated with improved patient outcomes. This finding has prompted recommendations for increasing specialization and referrals to high-volume surgeons, yet their implementation in clinical practice has not been measured.
We performed cross-sectional analyses using 1999 and 2005 discharge information from the Health Care Utilization Project National Inpatient Sample to measure whether the number of procedures performed by high-volume surgeons increased over time. Procedures included those demonstrated to have strong surgeon volume-outcome associations in the literature. International Classification of Diseases, Ninth Revision codes were employed for colorectal procedures, esophagectomy, gastrectomy, pancreatectomy, thyroidectomy, coronary artery bypass graft surgery, and carotid endarterectomy. Bivariate analyses and hierarchical generalized linear models were employed to measure association between surgeon volume and length of stay (LOS) and mortality or complications.
There was a significant increase in the proportion of procedures performed by high-volume surgeons over time, with the most dramatic increases seen for gastrectomy (54%), pancreatectomy (31%), and thyroidectomy (23%). Having a procedure performed by a high-volume surgeon was associated with patient race and insurance status. Overall, unadjusted mortality and LOS were significantly lower for high-volume surgeons compared with low-volume surgeons in 1999 and 2005. In multivariable hierarchical generalized linear models, only differences in LOS by surgeon volume remained significant in both years.
The proportion of procedures performed by high-volume surgeons increased over a 6-year period, as evidence mounted in support of a surgeon volume-outcome association. Efforts are still needed to improve access among underserved subsets of the population and eliminate apparent disparities based on patient race and insurance status.
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ABSTRACT: Background: Distal radius fractures (DRFs) are one of the most common injuries among the elderly, resulting in significant expense and disability. The specific aims of this study are (1) to examine rates of therapy following DRFs and (2) to identify those factors that influence utilization of therapy and time span between DRF treatment and therapy among a national cohort of elderly patients. Methods: We examined national use of physical and occupational therapy among all Medicare beneficiaries who suffered DRFs between January 1, 2007, and October 1, 2007, and assessed the effect of treatment, patient-related, and surgeon-related factors on utilization of therapy. Results: Overall, 20.6% of patients received either physical or occupational therapy following DRF. Use of therapy varied by DRF treatment, and patients who underwent open reduction and internal fixation were more likely to receive therapy compared with patients who received closed reduction. Patients who received open reduction and internal fixation were also referred to therapy earlier compared with patients who received external fixation, percutaneous pinning, and closed reduction. Surgeon specialization is associated with greater use of postoperative therapy. Patient predictors of therapy use include younger age, female sex, higher socioeconomic status, and fewer comorbidity conditions. Conclusion: Use of therapy following DRF varies significantly by both patient- and surgeon-related factors. Identifying patients who benefit from postinjury therapy can allow for better resource utilization following these common injuries.04/2014; 2(4):e130. DOI:10.1097/GOX.0000000000000019
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ABSTRACT: Health services research (HSR) is broadly focused on characterizing and improving the access, quality, delivery, and cost of health care. HSR is a multidisciplinary field, engaging experts in clinical medicine and surgery, policy, economics, implementation science, statistics, psychology, and education to improve the care of patients across all specialties. This article summarizes the evolution and distinctive attributes of HSR and present several real-world applications.Hand Clinics 08/2014; 30(3):259–268. DOI:10.1016/j.hcl.2014.05.004 · 1.07 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Knowledge about factors associated with provider ordering of appropriate testing is limited.Journal of General Internal Medicine 06/2014; DOI:10.1007/s11606-014-2907-9 · 3.42 Impact Factor