Association of Dermatology Consultations With Patient Care Outcomes in Hospitalized Patients With Inflammatory Skin Diseases

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Abstract

Importance

The value of inpatient dermatology consultations has traditionally been demonstrated with frequency in changes of diagnosis and management; however, the impact of dermatology consultations on metrics such as hospital length of stay and readmission rates remains unknown.

Objective

To determine the association of dermatology consultations with patient care in hospitalized patients using objective values.

Design, Setting, and Participants

We retrospectively queried the deidentified database of patients hospitalized between January 1, 2012, and December 31, 2014,

Design, Setting, and Participants

at a single university medical center. A total of

Design, Setting, and Participants

413 patients with a primary inflammatory skin condition discharge diagnosis and 647 patients with primary inflammatory skin condition admission diagnosis were selected.

Main Outcomes and Measures

Hospital length of stay and 1-year readmission with inflammatory skin conditions.

Results

The 413 patients with a primary inflammatory skin condition discharge diagnosis were 61.0% female and had a mean (SD) age of 55.1 (16.4) years. The 647 patients with primary inflammatory skin condition admission diagnosis were 50.8% female and had a mean (SD) age of 57.8 (15.9) years. Multivariable modeling showed that dermatology consultations were associated with a reduction of 1-year inflammatory skin condition readmissions among patients who were discharged primarily with an inflammatory skin condition (readmission probability, 0.0025; 95% CI, 0.00020-0.030 with dermatology consult vs 0.026; 95% CI, 0.0065-0.10 without; odds ratio, 0.093; 95% CI, 0.010-0.840; P = .03). No other confounding variable was associated with reduction in readmissions. Multivariable modeling also showed that dermatology consultations were associated with a reduction in the adjusted hospital length of stay by 2.64 days (95% CI, 1.75-3.53 days; P < .001).

Conclusions and Relevance

Dermatology consultations were associated with improvements of outcomes among hospitalized patients. The expansion of the role of dermatology consultation services may improve patient care in a cost-effective manner.

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