EPO Adjustments in Patients With Elevated Hemoglobin Levels

Provider Practice Patterns Compared With Recommended Practice Guidelines

Allan J. Collins, James P. Ebben, David T. Gilbertson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

20 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: This study investigates provider practices regarding recombinant human erythropoietin (rHuEPO) dose when patient hemoglobin levels exceeded National Kidney Foundation-Dialysis Outcomes Quality Initiative target levels and reached 13 g/dL or greater (≥130 g/L). Methods: The study population (N = 167,796) was hemodialysis patients prevalent on January 1, 2003, who were on renal replacement therapy at least 90 days with Medicare as primary payer and rHuEPO claims in 2 or more consecutive months. Patient characteristics were obtained from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Medical Evidence Report, and comorbid conditions were determined from Medicare claims. Providers and rHuEPO claims were linked by using CMS-assigned provider numbers and the CMS Annual End-Stage Renal Disease Facility Survey. Between-provider differences in patient characteristics were examined by using chi-square test, and provider effect on appropriate response, by using logistic regression. Results: DaVita's percentage of monthly claims for patients with hemoglobin levels of 13 g/dL or greater (≥130 g/L; 16.7%) and mean monthly rHuEPO dose (54,299 units) were highest. Dialysis Clinic Inc's percentage of such claims (2.0%) and mean monthly dose (38,687 units) were lowest. Dialysis Clinic Inc, Fresenius, and Renal Care Group had the highest percentage of recommended dose adjustments (mean, 70% of units); hospital-based units had the lowest (59%). By adjusted odds ratio, adjustments were 20% more likely for Dialysis Clinic Inc, Fresenius, and Renal Care Group compared with DaVita, National Nephrology Associates, hospital-based units, and independents (17% to 28% less likely). Conclusion: rHuEPO dose reduction practices are dependent on specific dialysis providers and whether units are hospital based or independent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)135-142
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Kidney Diseases
Volume49
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2007

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Erythropoietin
Practice Guidelines
Dialysis
Hemoglobins
Hospital Units
Medicare
Kidney
Renal Replacement Therapy
Nephrology
Medicaid
Chi-Square Distribution
Chronic Kidney Failure
Renal Dialysis
Logistic Models
Odds Ratio
Population

Keywords

  • Hematocrit
  • hemodialysis (HD)
  • hemoglobin
  • recombinant human erythropoietin

Cite this

EPO Adjustments in Patients With Elevated Hemoglobin Levels : Provider Practice Patterns Compared With Recommended Practice Guidelines. / Collins, Allan J.; Ebben, James P.; Gilbertson, David T.

In: American Journal of Kidney Diseases, Vol. 49, No. 1, 01.01.2007, p. 135-142.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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abstract = "Background: This study investigates provider practices regarding recombinant human erythropoietin (rHuEPO) dose when patient hemoglobin levels exceeded National Kidney Foundation-Dialysis Outcomes Quality Initiative target levels and reached 13 g/dL or greater (≥130 g/L). Methods: The study population (N = 167,796) was hemodialysis patients prevalent on January 1, 2003, who were on renal replacement therapy at least 90 days with Medicare as primary payer and rHuEPO claims in 2 or more consecutive months. Patient characteristics were obtained from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Medical Evidence Report, and comorbid conditions were determined from Medicare claims. Providers and rHuEPO claims were linked by using CMS-assigned provider numbers and the CMS Annual End-Stage Renal Disease Facility Survey. Between-provider differences in patient characteristics were examined by using chi-square test, and provider effect on appropriate response, by using logistic regression. Results: DaVita's percentage of monthly claims for patients with hemoglobin levels of 13 g/dL or greater (≥130 g/L; 16.7{\%}) and mean monthly rHuEPO dose (54,299 units) were highest. Dialysis Clinic Inc's percentage of such claims (2.0{\%}) and mean monthly dose (38,687 units) were lowest. Dialysis Clinic Inc, Fresenius, and Renal Care Group had the highest percentage of recommended dose adjustments (mean, 70{\%} of units); hospital-based units had the lowest (59{\%}). By adjusted odds ratio, adjustments were 20{\%} more likely for Dialysis Clinic Inc, Fresenius, and Renal Care Group compared with DaVita, National Nephrology Associates, hospital-based units, and independents (17{\%} to 28{\%} less likely). Conclusion: rHuEPO dose reduction practices are dependent on specific dialysis providers and whether units are hospital based or independent.",
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AB - Background: This study investigates provider practices regarding recombinant human erythropoietin (rHuEPO) dose when patient hemoglobin levels exceeded National Kidney Foundation-Dialysis Outcomes Quality Initiative target levels and reached 13 g/dL or greater (≥130 g/L). Methods: The study population (N = 167,796) was hemodialysis patients prevalent on January 1, 2003, who were on renal replacement therapy at least 90 days with Medicare as primary payer and rHuEPO claims in 2 or more consecutive months. Patient characteristics were obtained from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Medical Evidence Report, and comorbid conditions were determined from Medicare claims. Providers and rHuEPO claims were linked by using CMS-assigned provider numbers and the CMS Annual End-Stage Renal Disease Facility Survey. Between-provider differences in patient characteristics were examined by using chi-square test, and provider effect on appropriate response, by using logistic regression. Results: DaVita's percentage of monthly claims for patients with hemoglobin levels of 13 g/dL or greater (≥130 g/L; 16.7%) and mean monthly rHuEPO dose (54,299 units) were highest. Dialysis Clinic Inc's percentage of such claims (2.0%) and mean monthly dose (38,687 units) were lowest. Dialysis Clinic Inc, Fresenius, and Renal Care Group had the highest percentage of recommended dose adjustments (mean, 70% of units); hospital-based units had the lowest (59%). By adjusted odds ratio, adjustments were 20% more likely for Dialysis Clinic Inc, Fresenius, and Renal Care Group compared with DaVita, National Nephrology Associates, hospital-based units, and independents (17% to 28% less likely). Conclusion: rHuEPO dose reduction practices are dependent on specific dialysis providers and whether units are hospital based or independent.

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