Regional variation in antenatal corticosteroid use: a network-level quality improvement study.

Journal Article

Examination of regional care patterns in antenatal corticosteroid use (ACU) rates may be salient for the development of targeted interventions. Our objective was to assess network-level variation using California perinatal care regions as a proxy. We hypothesized that (1) significant variation in ACU exists within and between California perinatal care regions, and (2) lower performing regions exhibit greater NICU-level variability in ACU than higher performing regions.We undertook cross-sectional analysis of 33,610 very low birth weight infants cared for at 120 hospitals in 11 California perinatal care regions from 2005 to 2011. We computed risk-adjusted median ACU rates and interquartile ranges (IQR) for each perinatal care region. The degree of variation was assessed using hierarchical multivariate regression analysis with NICU as a random effect and region as a fixed effect.From 2005 to 2011, mean ACU rates across California increased from 82% to 87.9%. Regional median (IQR) ACU rates ranged from 68.4% (24.3) to 92.9% (4.8). We found significant variation in ACU rates among regions (P < .0001). Compared with Level IV NICUs, care in a lower level of care was a strongly significant predictor of lower odds of receiving antenatal corticosteroids in a multilevel model (Level III, 0.65 [0.45-0.95]; Level II, 0.39 [0.24-0.64]; P < .001). Regions with lower performance in ACU exhibited greater variability in performance.We found significant variation in ACU rates among California perinatal regions. Regional quality improvement approaches may offer a new avenue to spread best practice.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Profit, J; Goldstein, BA; Tamaresis, J; Kan, P; Lee, HC

Published Date

  • February 2015

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 135 / 2

Start / End Page

  • e397 - e404

PubMed ID

  • 25601974

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1098-4275

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0031-4005

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1542/peds.2014-2177

Language

  • eng