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Health Agencies Update |

Improved Cardiac Patient Safety

Bridget M. Kuehn, MSJ
JAMA. 2014;311(8):791. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.1009.
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Fewer adverse events are occurring in patients hospitalized with cardiac conditions, but other conditions haven’t seen much improvement, according to an analysis funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

Using data on more than 61 000 hospitalized patients from the Medicare Patient Safety Monitoring System, the researchers compared the rates of adverse events for patients with certain conditions between 2005 and 2011 (Wang Y et al. N Engl J Med. 2014;370[4]:341-335). Adverse events among patients with acute myocardial infarction declined from 5% to 3.7%, and the fraction of patients experiencing 1 or more such poor outcomes decreased from about 1 in 4 to about 1 in 5. Patients with congestive heart failure also had fewer adverse events: the adverse event rate decreased from 3.7% to 2.7%, and the percentage of patients having 1 or more adverse events declined from 17.5% to 14.2%. The researchers estimated that 81 000 adverse events were averted for patients hospitalized with cardiac conditions during this period.

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Patient safety efforts have helped reduce adverse events among hospitalized patients with myocardial infarction and other cardiac conditions.



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