Outcomes of patients with acute decompensated heart failure managed by cardiologists versus noncardiologists

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Article, Peer-reviewed

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Physician practice patterns in the management of hospitalized acute decompensated heart failure(ADHF) patients may vary by specialty; comparative practice patterns in ADHF management and clinical outcomes as a function of provider type have not been well reported. We studied a total of 496 patients discharged with the principal diagnosis of ADHF to analyze practice patterns among 3 provider types (cardiologists, hospitalists, and nonhospitalists). We examined outcomes of death and rehospitalization for HF and adherence to the Joint Commission HF performance core measures. Cardiologists had the highest adherence in all 4 HF core measures compared with hospitalists and nonhospitalists. At 6 months, 6.0% of the patients cared by cardiologists died compared with 10.9% and 11.4% cared by hospitalist and nonhospitalists (p = 0.12). Patients cared for by cardiologists had a significantly lower 6-month ADHF readmission rate (16.2%) compared with hospitalists (40.1%) and nonhospitalists (34.9%, p