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Adding social determinant data changes children's hospitals' readmissions performance

M.R. Sills, M. Hall, G.J. Cutler, J.D. Colvin, L.M. Gottlieb, M.L. Macy, J.L. Bettenhausen, R.B. Morse, E.S. Fieldston, J.L. Raphael, K.A. Auger, S.S. Shah
J Pediatr

Objectives: To determine whether social determinants of health (SDH) risk adjustment changes hospital-level performance on the 30-day Pediatric All-Condition Readmission (PACR) measure and improves fit and accuracy of discharge-level models.

Study Design: We performed a retrospective cohort study of all hospital discharges meeting criteria for the PACR from 47 hospitals in the Pediatric Health Information database from January to December 2014. We built four nested regression models by sequentially adding risk adjustment factors as follows: chronic condition indicators (CCIs); PACR patient factors (age and sex); electronic health record-derived SDH (race, ethnicity, payer), and zip code-linked SDH (families below poverty level, vacant housing units, adults without a high school diploma, single-parent households, median household income, unemployment rate). For each model, we measured the change in hospitals' readmission decile-rank and assessed model fit and accuracy.

Results: For the 458 686 discharges meeting PACR inclusion criteria, in multivariable models, factors associated with higher discharge-level PACR measure included age

Conclusions: We found that risk adjustment for SDH changed hospitals' readmissions rate rank order. Hospital-level changes in relative readmissions performance can have considerable financial implications; thus, for pay for performance measures calculated at the hospital level, and for research associated therewith, our findings support the inclusion of SDH variables in risk adjustment.

Sills MR, Hall M, Cutler GJ, et al. Adding social determinant data changes children's hospitals' readmissions performance. J Pediatr. 2017;186:150-157.e151. PMID: 28476461. DOI: 10.1016/j.jpeds.2017.03.056.

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Publication year
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Peer Reviewed Research
Children and Youth
Social Determinant of Health
Built Environment
Economic Security
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Other Study Design