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Ann Thorac Surg. 1996 Jan;61(1):17-20.

No continuous relationship between Veterans Affairs hospital coronary artery bypass grafting surgical volume and operative mortality.

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  • 1Denver Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery, CO 80220, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The purpose of this study was to determine whether risk-adjusted coronary artery bypass grafting mortality rates are significantly related to coronary artery bypass grafting surgical procedure volume within the Department of Veterans Affairs hospital system.

METHODS:

From April 1987 to September 1992, expected mortality rates were calculated for 23,986 coronary artery bypass grafting procedures performed at 44 different Veterans Affairs hospitals.

RESULTS:

This study found a statistically significant relationship between annual hospital coronary artery bypass grafting volume and observed mortality rates (p < 0.02). However, no statistically significant relationship between coronary artery bypass grafting volume and risk-adjusted operative mortality was found (p = 0.10). Using analysis of variance on hospital-level data, hospitals with 100 or less cases per year have higher observed to expected mortality ratios than hospitals performing more than 100 cases per year (p = 0.03). Using Poisson regression models, however, a volume threshold could not be found.

CONCLUSIONS:

These findings are consistent with the current Veterans Affairs policy requirements to periodically review quality at low-volume hospitals.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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