No CrossRef data available.
Published online by Cambridge University Press: 02 November 2020
Background: Audit-and-feedback interventions track clinician practice patterns for a targeted practice behavior. Audit and feedback of antibiotic prescribing data for acute respiratory infections (ARI) is an effective stewardship strategy that relies on administrative coding to identify eligible visits for audit. Diagnostic shifting is the misclassification of a patient’s diagnosis in response to audit and feedback and is a potential unintended consequence of audit and feedback. Objective: To develop a method to identify patterns consistent with diagnostic shifting including both positive shifting (improved diagnosis and documentation) and negative shifting (intentionally altering documentation of diagnosis to justify antibiotic prescribing), after implementation of an audit-and-feedback intervention to improve ARI management. Methods: We evaluated the intervention effect on diagnostic shifting within 12 University of Utah pediatric clinics (293 providers). Data included 66,827 ARI diagnoses: pneumonia, sinusitis, bronchitis, pharyngitis, upper respiratory infection (URI), acute otitis media (AOM), or serous otitis with effusion (OME). To determine whether rates of ARI diagnoses changed after the intervention, we developed logistic generalized estimating equation (GEE) models with robust sandwich standard error estimates to account for clinic-wise clustering. Outcomes included the change in each ARI diagnosis relative to the competing 6 diagnoses included in audit-and-feedback reports before and after intervention implementation. Models tested for a change in outcomes after the intervention (ie, diagnostic shift) after adjustment for month of diagnosis. For each diagnosis, we estimated the population attributable fraction (PAF) for antibiotic prescriptions due to combined shifts in diagnostic frequencies and prescription rates for each diagnosis. The PAF is the estimated fraction of antibiotic prescriptions that would have changed under a population-level intervention. Results: In month-adjusted analyses, diagnoses of pneumonia and OME decreased after the intervention: odds ratio (OR), 0.46 (95% CI, 0.31–0.68) and OR, 0.81 (95% CI, 0.67–0.99), respectively. In addition, URI diagnoses increased: OR, 1.05 (95% CI 1.00, 1.11). We did not detect changes in the diagnosis rates of sinusitis, AOM, bronchitis, and pharyngitis post intervention. The intervention effect on the PAF for antibiotics prescriptions was consistently positive but relatively small in magnitude. PAF was highest for URIs (PAF, 8.87%), followed by AOM (PAF, 3.56%) and sinusitis (PAF, 2.76%), and was lowest for pneumonia and bronchitis (PAF, 0.41% for both). Conclusions: Our analysis found minimal evidence overall of diagnostic shifting after a stewardship intervention using audit and feedback in these pediatric clinics. Small changes in diagnostic coding may reflect more appropriate diagnosis and coding, a positive effect of audit and feedback, rather than intentional negative diagnostic shift.
No CrossRef data available.