Use of a Clinical Guideline and Orderset to Reduce Hospital Admissions for Croup

Gabrielle Hester, Amanda J. Nickel, David Watson, Walid Maalouli, Kelly R. Bergmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: Studies have found infrequent interventions after croup admission. Our objectives were to achieve 25% reduction in (1) admission rate and (2) neck radiograph utilization among patients presenting to the emergency department. METHODS: At our tertiary children's hospital, we implemented clustered interventions including education, guideline, and orderset integration. We included patients 3 months to 8 years old with an emergency department, observation, or inpatient encounter for croup. We excluded patients with direct or ICU admissions, complex chronic conditions, or concurrent asthma, pneumonia, or bronchiolitis. We reviewed a random sample of 60% of encounters from baseline (October 1, 2017 to September 30, 2019) and implementation (October 1, 2019 to September 30, 2020) periods. We conducted a posthoc analysis from October 1, 2017 to December 1, 2021 to assess sustainment during coronavirus disease 2019. Interrupted time series analysis was used to evaluate changes in outcome, process, and balancing measures. RESULTS: There were 2906 (2123 baseline and 783 implementation) encounters included. Extrapolating preintervention trend estimates, the baseline admission rate of 8.7% decreased to 5.5% postintervention (relative decrease 37% [95% confidence interval: 8 to 66]) and sustained over 26 months after implementation. Admission rate in patients receiving 2 or fewer racemic epinephrine was significantly lower in implementation (1.7%) compared with baseline (6.3%), relative decrease of 72% (95% confidence interval: 68 to 88). There were no significant changes in neck radiographs, length of stay, or revisits. CONCLUSIONS: Croup quality improvement interventions were associated with a significant decrease in hospital admissions with no increase in revisits.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere2021053507
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2022

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Copyright © 2022 by the American Academy of Pediatrics.


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