Magnet Designation Associated With Improved Hospital Outcomes: EAST Day Three

Naples continues to be sunny and filled with powerful talks from influential trauma surgeons.  Today’s EAST conference saw Dr. Tracy Evans, from Lancaster General Hospital, deliver a clear message regarding nursing Magnet designation and an association with mortality data.  Dr. Evans and colleagues showed data to support their contention that Magnet designation is associated with improved mortality at hospitals with existent trauma center designation.  Dr. Evans, at the morning scientific


paper session, clearly demonstrated data to substantiate her, and her colleagues’, experiences to date.


Dr Evans specifically touched on the the forces of magnetism, and described the impact of nursing care on trauma hospitals.  Dr. Evans highlighted data from 27 trauma centers in Pennsylvania that had been reviewed by the Pennsylvania Trauma Systems Foundation.  An important inclusion criterion from the study involved taking data only from level 1 and 2 centers with admissions greater than 500 qualifying patients per year.  Seventeen of these accepted centers were non-magnet hospitals and this portion of the group represented 42,000 patients.  Ten other centers were magnet designated and contributed 30,000 patients to the sample.  Dr. Evans and her team then used a multi-variate analysis to demonstrate 20% less mortality in magnet designated centers, which represented a statistically significant difference between the two types of centers.  Evans stressed that this mortality reduction is on-par with that seen among hospitals with trauma center designation versus those without.


Clearly, this fine study demonstrates correlation rather than causality.  Are we able to extrapolate that nursing magnet designation is causal for better quality? We are not.  However, we have learned that magnet designation is one more way in which participants in the healthcare system can get a sense of overall quality in a hospital type institution. Again, we are unable to tell whether magnet designation causes improved quality but we can readily think that having magnet designation is associated with the presence of increased quality.  This represents nice work by Dr Evans and her colleagues.imagejpeg_0


In attendance, as an impressive show of support, was the advanced practitioner team from Lancaster General and Dr. Fredrick Rogers, Trauma Medical Director at Lancaster General.  Dr. Evans, with this abstract submission and presentation, will be moving toward the “trifecta” for publication and awaits, with good probability of success, journal acceptance and publication.  This represents one more piece of evidence linking nursing standards to quality of care provided by an institution.  I, and other members of the blog team, look forward to the continued academic strength and data coming out of Lancaster General Health under the guidance of Dr. Rogers in association with his team.