Improving Quality of Pediatric Surgery

Assessing surgical patient outcomes and identifying complications will help save lives

(RxWiki News) A new program designed to improve surgical quality for children helps reduce complications and saves lives, according to findings that appear in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons.

In a pilot study, researchers examined the potential benefits of the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program - Pediatrics (ACS NSQIP Peds). After collecting outcomes of 7,287 pediatric surgical patients, the researchers were able to identify rates of mortality, post-operative complication, and infection.

According to Clifford Y. Ko, M.D. F.A.C.S., director of American College of Surgeons Division of Research and Optimal Patient Care and one of the study's authors, increasing the amount of patient outcome data is the key to improving quality of care. This point is substantiated by results from the original ACS NSQIP for assessing adult patient outcomes.

By providing information on procedures with the highest rates of complications, the original ACS NSQIP has been shown to help hospitals prevent between 250 and 500 complications annually, and save between 12 to 36 lives each year.

The nationwide database compiled by ACS NSQIP Peds will provide hospitals with similar information so that they will be able to develop strategies to avoid such complications and improve patient outcomes.

The program, which is currently in phase 2 of development, is being assessed at 29 different hospitals around the United States.

Review Date: 
January 26, 2011