Background: Although organizational change has been advocated as a critical component of quality improvement, there is little data available on the variation and effectiveness of organizational elements in the care of acute myocardial infarction (AMI). Purpose: This study was designed to examine the impact of organizational infrastructure on the use of aspirin and β-blockers during and after AMI. Methods: We assessed organizational infrastructure for AMI care in 44 hospitals in Kansas and linked these data to patient-specific process of care data collected in Kansas as part of the Cooperative Cardiovascular Project. While controlling for clustering within hospitals, we examined the relationships between hospital infrastructure and use of aspirin and β-blocker both at admission and discharge. Results: Hospitals varied widely in their inclusion of aspirin and β-blockers in AMI pathways, protocols, and standardized order sets. Hospitals also varied in the involvement of their physicians in AMI quality improvement and in their ability to identify a physician champion for AMI care. Patients were more likely to receive aspirin on admission in hospitals that included aspirin in their emergency department order sets (odds ratio [OR] 1.57, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.01-2.48) and were more likely to receive β-blockers on admission and at discharge if β-blockers were included in an emergency department protocol or pathway (OR 2.14, 95% CI 1.25-3.77 and OR 3.5, 95% CI 1.14-14.38, respectively). Use of β-blockers at discharge was also associated with commitment of administration to AMI care and the presence of a physician champion. Conclusions: Quality improvement efforts should include a close examination of the organization of AMI care to assure that critical elements in the care of AMI patients are not inadvertently omitted.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine