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Study Finds Pediatric Death Higher in EDs With Lower Pediatric Readiness

Critically ill children who present to emergency departments (EDs) that are poorly prepared to deal with pediatric emergencies are more than three times as likely to die than children who present to child-ready EDs, according to a new study published in the journal Pediatrics, writes Medscape.

The study – Emergency Department Pediatric Readiness and Mortality in Critically Ill Children – sought to evaluate the effect of ED pediatric readiness on the mortality of critically ill children. Researchers conducted a retrospective cohort study in Florida, Iowa, Massachusetts, Nebraska, and New York, focusing on patients aged 0 to 18 years with critical illness, defined as requiring intensive care admission or experiencing death during the encounter. ED and inpatient administrative data from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality’s Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project linked to hospital-specific data from the 2013 National Pediatric Readiness Project was used.

The study concluded that presentation to hospitals with a high pediatric readiness score is associated with decreased mortality. Efforts to increase ED readiness for pediatric emergencies may improve patient outcomes.

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