Four of five hospital performance measures for heart failure may not be a good indicator of patient outcomes, according to a report in the Jan. 3 Journal of the American Medical Association. Researchers analyzed data from 5,791 heart-failure patients at 91 hospitals from March 2003 to December 2004 to determine the relationship between clinical practice guidelines and readmissions and mortality after discharge. According to the study, none of the recommended performance measures were a significant independent predictor of death; however, the use of an angiotensin-converting enzyme, or ACE, inhibitor or an angiotensin-receptor blocker was associated with a 49% lower risk for 60- to 90-day mortality and readmissions. Prescription of a beta blocker at discharge also was associated with better outcomes but was not among the performance measures recommended under the guidelines. Read the abstract. -- by Andis Robeznieks
Study looks at value of quality tool
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