1 Aalborg University Hospital, The Faculty of Medicine, Aalborg University, VBN2 Department of Clinical Medicine, The Faculty of Medicine, Aalborg University, VBN3 The Faculty of Medicine, Aalborg University, VBN4 Psykiatrien, The Faculty of Medicine, Aalborg University, VBN5 unknown
A Nationwide Study of Performance Measures and Case-Fatality
Background and Purpose-Studies have reported higher risks of death and other adverse outcomes in acute stroke patients admitted off-hours; however, little is known about the underlying mechanisms. According to time of admission, our aim was to examine compliance with performance measures for acute stroke care processes, including the effect of a systematic quality improvement program, and to examine 30 days case-fatality. Methods-A population-based historical cohort study, including patients admitted to Danish hospitals with a first ever acute stroke (January 1, 2003, to December 31, 2011; N=64 975). Off-hours were weekends and evening and nighttime shifts on weekdays. Compliance with performance measures was compared using general linear modeling, and odds ratios for 30 days case-fatality were obtained using multivariable logistic regression. Results-Patients admitted off-hours had a lower chance of compliance with 8 out of 10 performance measures; however, these differences diminished over time. Unadjusted odds ratio for 30 days case-fatality, for patients admitted off-hours compared with patients admitted on-hours, was 1.15 (95% confidence interval, 1.09-1.21). Adjusting for patient characteristics (in particular, stroke severity) decreased the odds ratio to 1.03 (95% confidence interval, 0.97-1.10). Additional adjustment for hospital characteristics and compliance with performance measures had no effect on the odds ratio. Conclusion-Patients admitted off-hours received a poorer quality of care. However, the admission time-related differences in care were substantially reduced over time, and the differences in 30 days case-fatality appeared primarily to be explained by differences in stroke severity.