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Am Heart J. 2012 Jul;164(1):80-6. doi: 10.1016/j.ahj.2012.04.017. Epub 2012 Jun 7.

Hospital compliance with performance measures and 30-day outcomes in patients with heart failure.

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Section of Cardiology, University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine, USA.



In 2005, the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association published performance measures to provide a standard of care for hospitalized patients with heart failure (HF). Despite increasing compliance with these measures, hospital mortality and readmission rates remain stagnant. Whether compliance with HF performance measures improves patient outcomes at the hospital level is unclear.


We evaluated compliance with HF performance measures at 3,655 US hospitals. Patients admitted with a diagnosis of HF in 2008 were identified using the US Department of Health and Human Services Hospital Compare database. Compliance with 4 specific performance measures was examined: evaluation of left ventricular systolic function, administration of angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor I or angiotensin-receptor blocker for left ventricular systolic dysfunction, offering smoking cessation advice and counseling, and providing discharge instructions. Thirty-day mortality and readmission rate were recorded.


Hospitals reporting greater compliance with the 4 performance measures had significantly lower 30-day mortality rates. However, these hospitals were also located in areas of higher socioeconomic status and treated higher volumes of patients with HF. After adjusting for socioeconomic and hospital factors, only evaluation of left ventricular systolic function was associated with lower 30-day mortality, and evaluation of left ventricular systolic function and smoking cessation counseling were associated with lower readmission rates.


We found that socioeconomic factors and hospital volume were stronger predictors of mortality than compliance with HF performance measures. After adjusting for socioeconomic factors and hospital volume, only 1 of the 4 performance measures was associated with lower 30-day mortality and 2 were associated with lower readmissions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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