Shorter wait between COVID-19 and elective surgery possible
Kaiser Permanente researchers have good news for patients, surgeons, anesthesiologists, and hospital administrators who have had to put off elective surgery because of a positive COVID-19 test. Among fully vaccinated patients, there may not be an elevated risk with surgery soon after COVID-19.
National recognition for Kaiser Permanente early alert system
Kaiser Permanente Northern California’s life-saving Advance Alert Monitor (AAM) program — an early detection system that helps care teams predict when hospitalized patients are at risk for clinical deterioration — has been recognized by The Joint Commission and National Quality Forum.
Predictive model paired with case management reduced rate of readmitted hospital patients
A follow-up program for Kaiser Permanente Northern California patients discharged from the hospital was associated with reduced readmissions without increased mortality, new research in the journal BMJ suggests.
Real-time in-hospital alerts associated with lower patient mortality
A sophisticated system that analyzes electronic data about hospital patients, identifies those at risk of deteriorating, and issues an alert to a centralized team of specially trained nurses resulted in a lower mortality rate, Kaiser Permanente researchers reported in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Medical imaging rates continue to rise despite push to reduce their use
Despite a broad campaign among physician groups to reduce the amount of imaging in medicine, the rates of use of CT, MRI and other scans have continued to increase in both the United States and Ontario, Canada, according to a new study of more than 135 million imaging exams.
Kaiser Permanente research shows mastectomy patients recover safely at home
A study in Annals of Surgical Oncology finds that the rate of home recovery after mastectomy increased from 23% regionwide to 61% in the 6 months after the program started, with no significant changes in emergency-department visits, reoperations, or readmissions.
Use of CT scans during pregnancy increased in U.S. and Canada over 2 decades
A large, multicenter study of advanced medical imaging in pregnancy, published in JAMA Network Open and co-led by Marilyn Kwan, PhD, found that CT scans were performed in 0.8% of pregnancies in the United States and 0.4% in Ontario in 2016; these rates increased nearly fourfold in the United States and doubled in Ontario over the 21 years.
Clinical tool accurately predicts children’s appendicitis risk in Kaiser Permanente emergency rooms
Erring on the side of caution, emergency physicians tend to order CT scans to evaluate appendicitis in children, “but research shows that we weren’t necessarily catching more appendicitis,” Dr. Cotton said. “CT scans are costly and expose children to ionizing radiation that can increase the risk of cancer. At the same time, emergency physicians do not want to miss an important diagnosis like appendicitis.”
Pregnancy history of red-blood-cell donors not linked to higher mortality in transfusion recipients
Division of Research investigators participated in a multi-institution collaborative analysis, which supported the safety of current transfusion practice within Kaiser Permanente’s network of community hospitals.
Kaiser Permanente “Tele-triage” of Chest Pain Safely Reduces Emergency Room Visits
A new Kaiser Permanente study led by Dana Sax, MD, published today in the December issue of the journal Health Affairs, found that “tele-triage” of patients with chest pain over the phone can safely and effectively direct people to the right place for receiving care.
Kidney Disease Patients with Implantable Heart Defibrillators at Greater Risk of Hospitalization
In a study of nearly 6,000 community-based patients with chronic kidney disease and heart failure, the use of implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs) was associated with a significantly increased risk of subsequent hospitalization.