Mortality among high-risk patients admitted with septic shock to U.S. teaching hospitals in July: Does the ‘July Effect’ exist?

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Abstract

Background

The ‘July effect’ is a phenomenon of inferior delivery of care at teaching hospitals during July because of relative inexperience of new physicians.

Objective

To study the difference in mortality among septic shock patients during July and another month.

Methods

Using the U.S. Nationwide Inpatient Sample, we estimated the difference in mortality among septic shock patients admitted during May and July from 2003 to 2011.

Results

117,593 and 121,004 patients with septic shock were admitted to non-teaching and teaching hospitals, respectively, in May and July. High-risk patients had similar mortality rates in non-teaching hospitals and teaching hospitals. Mortality rates were higher in teaching versus non-teaching hospitals in high-risk patients both in May and July. Overall, mortality rates were higher in teaching versus non-teaching hospitals both in May and July.

Conclusion

Similar trends in mortality are observed in both settings in May and July and no “July effect” was observed.

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