Transparency and Public Reporting of Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery Outcomes in North America

Jeffrey P. Jacobs, Marshall L. Jacobs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Health care is embarking on a new era of increased transparency. In January 2015, the Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) began to publicly report outcomes of pediatric and congenital cardiac surgery using the 2014 Society of Thoracic Surgeons Congenital Heart Surgery Database (STS CHSD) Mortality Risk Model. Because the 2014 STS CHSD Mortality Risk Model adjusts for procedural factors and patient-level factors, it is critical that centers are aware of the important impact of incomplete entry of data in the fields for patient-level factors. These factors are used to estimate expected mortality, and incomplete coding of these factors can lead to inaccurate assessment of case mix and estimation of expected mortality. In order to assure an accurate assessment of case mix and estimate of expected mortality, it is critical to assure accurate completion of the fields for patient factors, including preoperative factors. It is crucial to document variables such as whether the patient was preoperatively ventilated or had an important noncardiac congenital anatomic abnormality. The lack of entry of these variables will lead to an underestimation of expected mortality. The art and science of assessing outcomes of pediatric and congenital cardiac surgery continues to evolve. In the future, when models have been developed that encompass other outcomes in addition to mortality, pediatric and congenital cardiac surgical performance may be able to be assessed using a multidomain composite metric that incorporates both mortality and morbidity, adjusting for the operation performed and for patient-specific factors. It is our expectation that in the future, this information will also be publicly reported. In this era of increased transparency, the complete and accurate coding of both patient-level factors and procedure-level factors is critical.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)49-53
Number of pages5
JournalWorld Journal for Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016


  • database (all types)
  • morbidity)
  • outcomes (includes mortality
  • practice guidelines
  • professional affairs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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