Thousands of physicians attend scientific meetings annually. Although hospital physician staffing and composition may be affected by meetings, patient outcomes and treatment patterns during meeting dates are unknown. To analyze mortality and treatment differences among patients admitted with acute cardiovascular conditions during dates of national cardiology meetings compared with nonmeeting dates. Retrospective analysis of 30-day mortality among Medicare beneficiaries hospitalized with acute myocardial infarction (AMI), heart failure, or cardiac arrest from 2002 through 2011 during dates of 2 national cardiology meetings compared with identical nonmeeting days in the 3 weeks before and after conferences (AMI, 8570 hospitalizations during 82 meeting days and 57,471 during 492 nonmeeting days; heart failure, 19,282 during meeting days and 11,4591 during nonmeeting days; cardiac arrest, 1564 during meeting days and 9580 during nonmeeting days). Multivariable analyses were conducted separately for major teaching hospitals and nonteaching hospitals and for low- and high-risk patients. Differences in treatment utilization were assessed. Hospitalization during cardiology meeting dates. Thirty-day mortality, procedure rates, charges, ...Continue Reading
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