Objective: In a previous study, we assembled a multidisciplinary Canadian panel and identified 37 International Classification of Diseases-10-Canada Diagnosis Groups (DGs) for which emergency department (ED) management may potentially reduce mortality (emergency-sensitive conditions). Before using these 37 DGs to calculate a hospital standardized mortality ratio (HSMR) specific to emergency care, we aimed to test their face validity with ED care providers.
Methods: We conducted a self-administered web survey among Canadian emergency physicians and nurses between November 22 and December 31, 2012. All members (N=2,507) of the Canadian Association of Emergency Physicians and the National Emergency Nurses Association were surveyed. They were asked to agree or disagree (binary response) with the panel classification for each of the 37 DG emergency-sensitive conditions identified and provide free text responses to identify missing entities.
Results: A total of 719 ED providers (719 of 2,507, 29%) completed the survey, of whom 470 were physicians (470 of 1,407, 33%) and 232 were nurses (232 of 1,100, 21%). Information on professional status was not provided for 17 respondents. Of 37 DGs, 32 (e.g., A41 sepsis) were rated by more than 80% of respondents to be emergency-sensitive conditions. The remaining five DGs (e.g., E11 type 2 diabetes mellitus) were rated by 68.5 to 79.7% of the respondents to be emergency-sensitive conditions. Respondents suggested an additional 31 emergency-sensitive diagnoses.
Conclusion: We identified 37 emergency-sensitive DGs that had high face validity with emergency physicians and nurses, which will enable the calculation of an ED-HSMR.