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Research Activities, July 2010, No. 359


About Research Activities

Feature Story

One in four patients experiences revolving-door hospitalizations

Patient Safety and Quality

Simplified drug warnings improve patients' understanding of what to do or avoid when given a particular prescription
Health plans vary widely in the prescribing of antibiotics
Physicians' reasons for deviating from quality guidelines are usually justified
Adequate financial bonuses and peer support motivate providers to adhere to evidence-based treatment guidelines
Community health center collaboratives improve care quality but have little impact on disparities
Patients at small urban hospitals are more likely to suffer from pressure sores than those at small rural hospitals
Study suggests caution in interpreting impact of nurse staffing levels on postsurgical complication rates

Outcomes and Effectiveness Research

Patient outcomes are better than hospital volume for identifying high-quality bariatric surgery centers
New approach reduces microemboli responsible for neurologic injury following open-heart surgery
Implantable heart defibrillator is effective in reducing deaths among older heart failure patients
Body fat distribution in obese trauma patients is not linked to increased inflammation, infections, or mortality
Performance measures requiring antibiotics for pneumonia have not boosted antibiotic use in nonpneumonia patients

Pharmaceutical Research

Unlike the United Kingdom, the United States has boosted its use of broad-spectrum antibiotics for respiratory infections
Extended use of antiviral drugs found to be safe and effective in preventing symptomatic influenza
Epilepsy drugs do not appear to increase suicide risk in patients with bipolar disorder

HIV/AIDS Research

HIV patients are at risk for being prescribed wrong drug combinations
Hospitalization rates have declined over 5 years for patients with HIV infection, but disparities still exist

Elderly/Long-Term Care

Elderly lung cancer patients experience more adverse events during chemotherapy than younger patients

Child/Adolescent Health

Nearly 9 percent of children experience agitation during sedation for nonsurgical procedures

Health Information Technology

Computerized provider order entry significantly reduces medication errors in an ambulatory setting
Physicians support health information exchange but are concerned about paying monthly fees
No additional benefit seen with remote offsite monitoring of ICU patients

Agency News and Notes

Hospital heart attack deaths plummet
Using bar-code technology with eMAR reduces medication administration and transcription errors
Disparities widen in the use of asthma medications
Doctors remain remiss in advising overweight patients about healthy eating
Evidence inconclusive regarding prevention of Alzheimer's disease and cognitive decline

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Page last reviewed July 2010
Internet Citation: Research Activities, July 2010, No. 359. July 2010. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.