Impact of public reporting and outlier status identification on percutaneous coronary intervention case selection in Massachusetts

James M. McCabe, Karen E. Joynt, Frederick G.P. Welt, Frederic S. Resnic

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


Objectives This study sought to evaluate the impact of public reporting of hospitals as negative outliers on percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) case-mix selection. Background Public reporting of risk-adjusted in-hospital mortality after PCI is intended to improve outcomes. However, public labeling of negative outliers based on risk-adjusted mortality rates may detrimentally affect hospitals' willingness to care for high-risk patients. Methods We used generalized estimating equations to examine expected in-hospital mortality rates for 116,227 PCI patients at all nonfederally funded Massachusetts hospitals performing PCI from 2003 to 2010. The main outcome measure was the change in predicted in-hospital mortality rates per hospital after outlier status identification. Results The prevalence-weighted mean expected mortality for all PCI cases during the study period was 1.38 ± 0.36% (5.3 ± 1.96% for all shock or ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction patients, 0.58 ± 0.19% for all not shock, not ST-segment elevation myocardial infarction patients). After public identification as a negative outlier institution, there was an 18% relative reduction (absolute 0.25% reduction) in predicted mortality among PCI patients at outlier institutions (95% confidence interval: -0.04 to -0.46%, p = 0.021) compared with nonoutlier institutions. Throughout the study period, there was an additional 37% relative (0.51% absolute) reduction in the predicted mortality risk among all PCI patients in Massachusetts attributable to secular changes since the onset of public reporting (95% confidence interval: -0.20 to -0.83, p = 0.002). Conclusions The risk profile of PCI patients at outlier institutions was significantly lower after public identification compared with nonoutlier institutions, suggesting that risk-aversive behaviors among PCI operators at outlier institutions may be an unintended consequence of public reporting in Massachusetts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)625-630
Number of pages6
JournalJACC: Cardiovascular Interventions
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2013


  • case mix
  • intervention
  • outlier
  • percutaneous coronary
  • public reporting


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