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Sex and Race Differences in the Evaluation and Treatment of Young Adults Presenting to the Emergency Department With Chest Pain

Banco, Darcy; Chang, Jerway; Talmor, Nina; Wadhera, Priya; Mukhopadhyay, Amrita; Lu, Xinlin; Dong, Siyuan; Lu, Yukun; Betensky, Rebecca A; Blecker, Saul; Safdar, Basmah; Reynolds, Harmony R
Background Acute myocardial infarctions are increasingly common among young adults. We investigated sex and racial differences in the evaluation of chest pain (CP) among young adults presenting to the emergency department. Methods and Results Emergency department visits for adults aged 18 to 55 years presenting with CP were identified in the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey 2014 to 2018, which uses stratified sampling to produce national estimates. We evaluated associations between sex, race, and CP management before and after multivariable adjustment. We identified 4152 records representing 29 730 145 visits for CP among young adults. Women were less likely than men to be triaged as emergent (19.1% versus 23.3%, respectively, P<0.001), to undergo electrocardiography (74.2% versus 78.8%, respectively, P=0.024), or to be admitted to the hospital or observation unit (12.4% versus 17.9%, respectively, P<0.001), but ordering of cardiac biomarkers was similar. After multivariable adjustment, men were seen more quickly (hazard ratio [HR], 1.15 [95% CI, 1.05-1.26]) and were more likely to be admitted (adjusted odds ratio, 1.40 [95% CI, 1.08-1.81]; P=0.011). People of color waited longer for physician evaluation (HR, 0.82 [95% CI, 0.73-0.93]; P<0.001) than White adults after multivariable adjustment, but there were no racial differences in hospital admission, triage level, electrocardiography, or cardiac biomarker testing. Acute myocardial infarction was diagnosed in 1.4% of adults in the emergency department and 6.5% of admitted adults. Conclusions Women and people of color with CP waited longer to be seen by physicians, independent of clinical features. Women were independently less likely to be admitted when presenting with CP. These differences could impact downstream treatment and outcomes.
PMID: 35506534
ISSN: 2047-9980
CID: 5216162

A Project ECHO and community health worker intervention for patients with diabetes

Blecker, Saul; Paul, Margaret M; Jones, Simon; Billings, John; Bouchonville, Matthew F; Hager, Brant; Arora, Sanjeev; Berry, Carolyn A
BACKGROUND:Both community health workers and the Project ECHO model of specialist telementoring are innovative approaches to support primary care providers in the care of complex patients with diabetes.We studied the effect of an intervention that combined these two approaches on glycemic control. METHODS:Patients with diabetes were recruited from 10 federally qualified health centers in New Mexico. We used electronic health record (EHR) data to compare HbA1c levels prior to intervention enrollment with HbA1c levels after 3 months (early follow-up) and 12 months (late follow-up) following enrollment. We propensity matched intervention patients to comparison patients from other sites within the same EHR databases to estimate the average treatment effect. RESULTS:Among 557 intervention patients with HbA1c data, mean HbA1c decreased from 10.5% to 9.3% in the pre- versus post-intervention periods (p<0.001). As compared to the comparison group, the intervention was associated with a change in HbA1c of -0.2% (95% CI -0.4%-0.5%) and -0.3 (95% CI -0.5-0.0) in the early and late follow-up cohorts, respectively. The intervention was associated with a significant increase in percent of patients with HbA1c<8% in the late follow-up cohort (8.1%, 95%CI 2.2%-13.9%) but not the early follow-up cohort (3.6%, 95% CI -1.5%-8.7%) DISCUSSION: : The intervention was associated with a substantial decrease in HbA1c in intervention patients, although this improvement was not different from matched comparison patients in early follow-up. While combining community health workers with Project ECHO may hold promise for improving glycemic control, particularly in the longer term, further evaluations are needed.
PMID: 34973203
ISSN: 1555-7162
CID: 5108412

Identifying Patients With Advanced Heart Failure Using Administrative Data

Dunlay, Shannon M; Blecker, Saul; Schulte, Phillip J; Redfield, Margaret M; Ngufor, Che G; Glasgow, Amy
Objective/UNASSIGNED:To develop algorithms to identify patients with advanced heart failure (HF) that can be applied to administrative data. Patients and Methods/UNASSIGNED:In a population-based cohort of all residents of Olmsted County, Minnesota, with greater than or equal to 1 HF billing code 2007-2017 (n=8657), we identified all patients with advanced HF (n=847) by applying the gold standard European Society of Cardiology advanced HF criteria via manual medical review by an HF cardiologist. The advanced HF index date was the date the patient first met all European Society of Cardiology criteria. We subsequently developed candidate algorithms to identify advanced HF using administrative data (billing codes and prescriptions relevant to HF or comorbidities that affect HF outcomes), applied them to the HF cohort, and assessed their ability to identify patients with advanced HF on or after their advanced HF index date. Results/UNASSIGNED:A single hospitalization for HF or ventricular arrhythmias identified all patients with advanced HF (sensitivity, 100%); however, the positive predictive value (PPV) was low (36.4%). More stringent definitions, including additional hospitalizations and/or other signs of advanced HF (hyponatremia, acute kidney injury, hypotension, or high-dose diuretic use), decreased the sensitivity but improved the specificity and PPV. For example, 2 hospitalizations plus 1 sign of advanced HF had a sensitivity of 72.7%, specificity of 89.8%, and PPV of 60.5%. Negative predictive values were high for all algorithms evaluated. Conclusion/UNASSIGNED:Algorithms using administrative data can identify patients with advanced HF with reasonable performance.
PMID: 35369610
ISSN: 2542-4548
CID: 5219502

Development of Advanced Heart Failure: A Population-Based Study

Subramaniam, Anna V; Weston, Susan A; Killian, Jill M; Schulte, Phillip J; Roger, Veronique L; Redfield, Margaret M; Blecker, Saul B; Dunlay, Shannon M
BACKGROUND:Some patients with heart failure (HF) will go on to develop advanced HF, characterized by severe HF symptoms despite attempts to optimize medical therapy. The goals of this study were to examine the risk of developing advanced HF in patients with newly diagnosed HF, identify risk factors for developing advanced HF, and evaluate the impact of advanced HF on outcomes. METHODS:This was a population-based, retrospective cohort study of Olmsted County, Minnesota, residents with a new clinical diagnosis of HF between 2007 and 2017. Risk factors for the development of advanced HF (2018 European Society of Cardiology criteria) were examined using cause-specific Cox proportional hazard regression models. The associations of development of advanced HF with risks of hospitalization and mortality were examined using the Andersen-Gill and Cox models, respectively. RESULTS:<0.001), and cardiovascular mortality (hazard ratio, 7.8 [95% CI, 6.7-9.1]). CONCLUSIONS:In this population-based study, development of advanced HF was common and was associated with markedly increased morbidity and mortality.
PMID: 35332793
ISSN: 1941-3297
CID: 5206772

Outcomes of Incidental Lung Nodules With Structured Recommendations and Electronic Tracking

Bagga, Barun; Fansiwala, Kush; Thomas, Shailin; Chung, Ryan; Moore, William H; Babb, James S; Horwitz, Leora I; Blecker, Saul; Kang, Stella K
OBJECTIVE:To evaluate the impact of structured recommendations on follow-up completion for incidental lung nodules (ILNs). METHODS:Patients with ILNs before and after implementation of structured Fleischner recommendations and electronic tracking were sampled randomly. The cohorts were compared for imaging follow-up. Multivariable logistic regression was used to assess appropriate follow-up and loss to follow-up, with independent variables including use of structured recommendations or tracking, age, gender, race, ethnicity, setting of the index test (inpatient, outpatient, emergency department), smoking history, and nodule features. RESULTS:In all, 1,301 patients met final inclusion criteria, including 255 patients before and 1,046 patients after structured recommendations or tracking. Baseline differences were found in the pre- and postintervention groups, with smaller ILNs and younger age after implementing structured recommendations. Comparing pre- versus postintervention outcomes, 40.0% (100 of 250) versus 29.5% (309 of 1,046) of patients had no follow-up despite Fleischner indications for imaging (P = .002), and among the remaining patients, 56.6% (82 of 145) versus 75.0% (553 of 737) followed up on time (P < .001). Delayed follow-up was more frequent before intervention. Differences postintervention were mostly accounted for by nodules ≤ 8 mm in the outpatient setting (P < .001). In multivariable analysis, younger age, White race, outpatient setting, and larger nodule size showed significant association with appropriate follow-up completion (P < .015), but structured recommendations did not. Similar results applied for loss to follow-up. DISCUSSION/CONCLUSIONS:Consistent use of structured reporting is likely key to mitigate selection bias when benchmarking rates of appropriate follow-up of ILN. Emergency department patients and inpatients are at high risk of missed or delayed follow-up despite structured recommendations.
PMID: 34896068
ISSN: 1558-349x
CID: 5109552

Development of an Electronic Trigger to Identify Delayed Follow-up HbA1c Testing for Patients with Uncontrolled Diabetes

Knoll, Brianna; Horwitz, Leora I; Garry, Kira; McCloskey, Jeanne; Nagler, Arielle R; Weerahandi, Himali; Chung, Wei-Yi; Blecker, Saul
PMID: 35037176
ISSN: 1525-1497
CID: 5131352

Ten Common Structures and Processes of High-Performing Primary Care Practices

Nguyen, Ann M; Paul, Margaret M; Shelley, Donna R; Albert, Stephanie L; Cohen, Deborah J; Bonsu, Pam; Wyte-Lake, Tamar; Blecker, Saul; Berry, Carolyn A
Structures (context of care delivery) and processes (actions aimed at delivery care) are posited to drive patient outcomes. Despite decades of primary care research, there remains a lack of evidence connecting specific structures/processes to patient outcomes to determine which of the numerous recommended structures/processes to prioritize for implementation. The objective of this study was to identify structures/processes most commonly present in high-performing primary care practices for chronic care management and prevention. We conducted key informant interviews with a national sample of 22 high-performing primary care practices. We identified the 10 most commonly present structures/processes in these practices, which largely enable 2 core functions: mobilizing staff to conduct patient outreach and helping practices avoid gaps in care. Given the costs of implementing and maintaining numerous structures/processes, our study provides a starting list for providers to prioritize and for researchers to investigate further for specific effects on patient outcomes.
PMID: 34654020
ISSN: 1550-5022
CID: 5153182

A Behavioral Economics-Electronic Health Record Module to Promote Appropriate Diabetes Management in Older Adults: Protocol for a Pragmatic Cluster Randomized Controlled Trial

Belli, Hayley M; Troxel, Andrea B; Blecker, Saul B; Anderman, Judd; Wong, Christina; Martinez, Tiffany R; Mann, Devin M
BACKGROUND:The integration of behavioral economics (BE) principles and electronic health records (EHRs) using clinical decision support (CDS) tools is a novel approach to improving health outcomes. Meanwhile, the American Geriatrics Society has created the Choosing Wisely (CW) initiative to promote less aggressive glycemic targets and reduction in pharmacologic therapy in older adults with type 2 diabetes mellitus. To date, few studies have shown the effectiveness of combined BE and EHR approaches for managing chronic conditions, and none have addressed guideline-driven deprescribing specifically in type 2 diabetes. We previously conducted a pilot study aimed at promoting appropriate CW guideline adherence using BE nudges and EHRs embedded within CDS tools at 5 clinics within the New York University Langone Health (NYULH) system. The BE-EHR module intervention was tested for usability, adoption, and early effectiveness. Preliminary results suggested a modest improvement of 5.1% in CW compliance. OBJECTIVE:This paper presents the protocol for a study that will investigate the effectiveness of a BE-EHR module intervention that leverages BE nudges with EHR technology and CDS tools to reduce overtreatment of type 2 diabetes in adults aged 76 years and older, per the CW guideline. METHODS:A pragmatic, investigator-blind, cluster randomized controlled trial was designed to evaluate the BE-EHR module. A total of 66 NYULH clinics will be randomized 1:1 to receive for 18 months either (1) a 6-component BE-EHR module intervention + standard care within the NYULH EHR, or (2) standard care only. The intervention will be administered to clinicians during any patient encounter (eg, in person, telemedicine, medication refill, etc). The primary outcome will be patient-level CW compliance. Secondary outcomes will measure the frequency of intervention component firings within the NYULH EHR, and provider utilization and interaction with the BE-EHR module components. RESULTS:Study recruitment commenced on December 7, 2020, with the activation of all 6 BE-EHR components in the NYULH EHR. CONCLUSIONS:This study will test the effectiveness of a previously developed, iteratively refined, user-tested, and pilot-tested BE-EHR module aimed at providing appropriate diabetes care to elderly adults, compared to usual care via a cluster randomized controlled trial. This innovative research will be the first pragmatic randomized controlled trial to use BE principles embedded within the EHR and delivered using CDS tools to specifically promote CW guideline adherence in type 2 diabetes. The study will also collect valuable information on clinician workflow and interaction with the BE-EHR module, guiding future research in optimizing the timely delivery of BE nudges within CDS tools. This work will address the effectiveness of BE-inspired interventions in diabetes and chronic disease management. TRIAL REGISTRATION/ NCT04181307; INTERNATIONAL REGISTERED REPORT IDENTIFIER (IRRID)/UNASSIGNED:DERR1-10.2196/28723.
PMID: 34704959
ISSN: 1929-0748
CID: 5042482

Advanced Heart Failure Epidemiology and Outcomes: A Population-Based Study

Dunlay, Shannon M; Roger, Véronique L; Killian, Jill M; Weston, Susan A; Schulte, Philip J; Subramaniam, Anna V; Blecker, Saul B; Redfield, Margaret M
OBJECTIVES/OBJECTIVE:The goal of this study was to evaluate the prevalence, characteristics, and outcomes of patients with advanced heart failure (HF) in a geographically defined population. BACKGROUND:Some patients with HF progress to advanced HF, characterized by debilitating HF symptoms refractory to therapy. Limited data are available on the epidemiology and outcomes of patients with advanced HF. METHODS:This was a population-based cohort study of all Olmsted County, Minnesota, adults with and without HF from 2007 to 2017. The 2018 European Society of Cardiology advanced HF diagnostic criteria were operationalized and applied to all patients with HF. Hospitalization and mortality in advanced HF, overall and according to ejection fraction (EF) type (reduced EF <40% [HFrEF], mid-range EF 40%-49% [HFmrEF], and preserved EF ≥50% [HFpEF]) were examined using Andersen-Gill and Cox models. RESULTS:Of 6,836 adults with HF, 936 (13.7%) met criteria for advanced HF. The prevalence of advanced HF increased with age and was higher in men. At advanced HF diagnosis, 396 (42.3%) patients had HFrEF, 134 (14.3%) had HFmrEF, and 406 (43.4%) had HFpEF. The median (interquartile range) time from advanced HF diagnosis to death was 12.2 months (3.7-29.9 months). The mean rate of hospitalization was 2.91 (95% CI: 2.78-3.06) per person-year in the first year after advanced HF diagnosis. There were no differences in risks of all-cause mortality or hospitalization by EF. Patients with advanced HFpEF were at lower risk for cardiovascular mortality compared with advanced HFrEF (HR: 0.79; 95% CI: 0.65-0.97). CONCLUSIONS:In this population-based study, more than one-half of patients with advanced HF had mid-range or preserved EF, and survival was poor regardless of EF.
PMID: 34391736
ISSN: 2213-1787
CID: 5010922

Validation of EHR medication fill data obtained through electronic linkage with pharmacies

Blecker, Saul; Adhikari, Samrachana; Zhang, Hanchao; Dodson, John A; Desai, Sunita M; Anzisi, Lisa; Pazand, Lily; Schoenthaler, Antoinette M; Mann, Devin M
PMID: 34595945
ISSN: 2376-1032
CID: 5050062