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Agency for Healthcare Research Quality

Research Activities

February 2013, No. 390

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About Research Activities

Feature Story

AHRQ toolkit helps hospitals improve antibiotic selection to reduce deadly C. difficile infections
From the Director

Child/Adolescent Health

Prescription of antidepressants for children and adolescents by office-based physicians is typically done off-label
Medical home for children and youth improves delivery of preventive services without raising expenditures

Primary Care

Patients who find it easy to access primary care are more likely to receive selected preventive services
Higher scores as a patient-centered medical home linked to higher operating costs
Researchers develop a task list to evaluate primary care workflow

Patient Safety and Quality

Surgeons are more reluctant to withdraw postoperative life support for patients with complications from surgeon error
Pay-for-performance did not spur more rapid quality improvement among low-performing hospitals
Process improvements in family practice lead to some improvements in intermediate outcomes

Chronic Disease

Patients with coronary artery disease who get ongoing support from their community pharmacy may adhere better to medications
An empowerment-based educational approach improves understanding and knowledge for patients with diabetes
Abnormal electrocardiogram results nearly double the risk of cardiovascular-related death for patients without heart disease
Bevacizumab, when added to chemotherapy regimen for elderly patients with lung cancer, does not increase survival rates

Comparative Effectiveness

Benefits of case management for chronic illness limited
More research needed to compare therapies for colorectal cancer metastases is to the liver
Some assessment tools and medications are effective for chronic cough
Both laparoscopic and open surgical techniques found effective for moving undescended testicles to normal position

Women's Health

Older women with breast cancer experience more complications with brachytherapy than whole breast irradiation
Giving birth to a small gestational age infant increases likelihood of later maternal ischemic heart disease
Using a terbutaline pump to prevent preterm birth may be beneficial, but evidence suggests caution

Disparities/Minority Health

Factors linked to racial or ethnic disparities in U.S. fetal death rates differ among groups
Rural patients with a serious form of gallstone disease are less likely than urban patients to receive treatment
Criminal justice system may create and aggravate health disparities among minorities

Mental Health

Co-occurring mental disorders such as PTSD and panic disorder prompt the depressed to seek earlier treatment

Health Care Costs and Financing

People harmed by unintentional, non-fire-related carbon monoxide poisoning results in hospital costs of more than $26 million

Health Information Technology

Teamwork key to long-term sustainability of health IT systems
Analyzing electronic health record data can help identify the overuse of cervical cancer screening


HCUP 2010 NEDS database now available

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AHRQ Publication No. 13-RA005
Current as of February 2013

Internet Citation:

Research Activities Newsletter. February 2013, No. 390. AHRQ Publication No. 13-RA005. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.


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