The link between aggressive treatments and lower failure-to-rescue rates

Hospitals with aggressive treatment styles, commonly referred to as high hospital care intensity, had lower rates of patients dying from a major complication (failure to rescue) but longer hospitalizations, according to a study published this month in JAMA Surgery. Author Kyle H. Sheetz,, M.D., M.S., of the Center for Healthcare Outcomes and Policy, Ann Arbor, Michigan and colleagues identified 706,520 patients at 2,544 hospitals who underwent one of seven major cardiovascular, orthopedic or general surgical operations. Patients who had surgery at high HCI versus low HCI hospital had increased major complication rates. But patients who had surgery at high HCI hospitals were five percent less likely to die of a major complication than at a low HCI facility. However, patients treated at high-HCI hospitals had longer hospitalizations, more inpatient deaths and lower hospice use during the final two years of life. Study abstract