Comparing patterns of care for febrile infants at community and university-affiliated hospitals

Rachel Cane, Ellen Kerns, Lauren Maskin, Beth Natt, Lisa Sieczkowski, Eric Biondi, Russell J. McCulloh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVES: Most children in the United States receive treatment in community hospitals, but descriptions of clinical practice patterns in pediatric care in this setting are lacking. Our objectives were to compare clinical practice patterns primarily between community and university-affiliated hospitals and secondarily by number of pediatric beds before and during participation in a national practice standardization project. METHODS: We performed a retrospective secondary analysis on data from 126 hospitals that participated in the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Value in Inpatient Pediatrics Reducing Excessive Variability in the Infant Sepsis Evaluation project, a national quality improvement project conducted to improve care for well-appearing febrile infants aged 7 to 60 days. Four use measures were compared by hospital type and by number of non-ICU pediatric beds. RESULTS: There were no differences between community and university-affiliated hospitals in the odds of hospital admission, average length of stay, or odds of cerebrospinal fluid culture. The odds of chest radiograph at community hospitals were higher only during the baseline period. There were no differences by number of pediatric beds in odds of admission or average length of stay. For hospitals with #30 pediatric beds, the odds of chest radiograph were higher and the odds of cerebrospinal fluid culture were lower compared with hospitals .50 beds during both study periods. CONCLUSIONS: In many key aspects, care for febrile infants does not differ between community and university-affiliated hospitals. Clinical practice may differ more by number of pediatric beds.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)231-238
Number of pages8
JournalHospital Pediatrics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Pediatrics


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