Feb 27, 2019

The American Academy of Pediatrics recently released their Top 10 2018 Hospital Pediatrics Articles and “A Quality Improvement Intervention to Improve Inpatient Pediatric Asthma Controller Accuracy,” authored by Alex Hogan, MD, a Connecticut Children's pediatric hospitalist, was the most read article of 2018.

Originally published in the March 2018 issue of Hospital Pediatrics, the study’s findings show that improved personalized inpatient assessments can enhance the accuracy of the prescribed asthma therapy a child receives. Currently, asthma contributes to more than 136,000 annual pediatric hospitalizations.

“It’s a great honor,” said Dr. Hogan. “I’m glad people can hear what we’re doing and adapt treatment methods to our findings. I hope this research will draw attention to the role inpatient providers have in managing treatment or changing our model so patients will leave the hospital with the right medicine.”

The study showed that when equipped with flow charts, prompts in electronic medical records, streamlined patient care decision tools and access to a mobile phone application, the quality of asthma care improved.

To guide each patient’s personalized treatments, the study provides an important decision-making tool that requires physicians to ask each patient six key asthma control questions.

“What we found is medical centers are very good at treating acute asthma attacks, but we’re not asking the right questions about why people are having these attacks and the underlying conditions that cause them,” Dr. Hogan said.

When these six questions were asked more frequently, the accuracy of the medications prescribed increased up to 80 percent in one year. Hogan says each patient’s results would be emailed to other physicians in the hospital, and those who were the most successful were given cookies or other prizes as incentives.

Dr. Hogan is currently working on other research projects that investigate risk factors for readmission and ensuring patients are discharged with the medications they need. He is also looking toward more community-oriented solutions to controlling and treating patients’ asthma. It is work that caught the attention of the Academic Pediatric Association who named Dr. Hogan a 2019 APA Young Investigator and awarded him $10,000 to fund the project.

“Connecticut Children's has always been a leader in using inpatient guidelines in determining which acute therapies to guide inpatient and outpatient medicines we give,” said Dr. Hogan. “I’m looking forward to continuing that tradition with future work.”

About Connecticut Children’s

Connecticut Children’s Medical Center is the only hospital in Connecticut dedicated exclusively to the care of children and is ranked by U.S. News & World Report and Women’s Choice as one of the best children’s hospitals in the nation. With a medical staff of more than 1,000, Connecticut Children’s provides comprehensive, compassionate health care in more than 30 pediatric specialties and subspecialties. Connecticut Children’s Medical Center is a not-for-profit organization, which serves as the primary pediatric teaching hospital for the UConn School of Medicine, has a teaching partnership with the Frank H. Netter MD School of Medicine at Quinnipiac University and is a research partner of The Jackson Laboratory. Connecticut Children’s Office for Community Child Health is a national leader in community-based prevention and wellness programs.