State Health Department Releases New Reports Detailing 30-day Readmission Rates for PCI and CABG

ALBANY, N.Y. (August 21, 2014) – Approximately 11 percent of patients undergoing percutaneous coronary interventions (PCI) and 15 percent who have coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) surgery are readmitted to the hospital within 30 days, according to two new reports released today by the New York State Department of Health.

The reports, which look at risk-adjusted 30-day readmission rates for PCI and CABG, build on the strong foundation of quality improvement initiatives for cardiac procedures and more than 20 years of publicly reporting mortality outcomes for PCIs and cardiac surgery.

While mortality is perhaps the most important outcome, readmission rates are also critical because they may indicate complications related to the procedure and involve additional costs.

"The PCI and CABG readmission reports provide hospitals valuable data and feedback on these procedures, which will help inform facilities’ quality improvement efforts," said Acting Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker. "The release of these reports reflects New York’s ongoing commitment to utilize health data to enhance quality of care and lower costs across the health care delivery system."

The reports were developed with clinical guidance from the NYS Cardiac Advisory Committee, an advisory group to the Commissioner of Health that consists of nationally recognized cardiac surgeons, cardiologists and others from related disciplines.

Data in the PCI report came from 59 non-federal hospitals in New York and looked at 45,705 patients discharged between Dec. 1, 2010 and Nov. 30, 2011 after having a PCI, also known as angioplasty or coronary stenting. During PCI, a catheter is threaded to the site of the blockage in a coronary artery, where in conjunction with the catheter, devices are used to open up the blockage. PCI is sometimes used as an emergency treatment for patients experiencing a heart attack or in shock.

Thirty-day readmission is defined as admission to a New York State non-Federal hospital within 30 days of discharge. A staged PCI, which occurs when the patient’s treatment plan includes an expected return to the hospital for additional PCI, does not count as readmission. However, repeat non-staged PCI, even if technically considered an outpatient procedure, does count as a readmission.

Across New York, the 30-day hospital readmission rate for PCI was 11.08 percent. The hospital risk-adjusted readmission rates, which measure hospital performance, range from 4.06 percent to 17.52 percent. Seven hospitals had risk-adjusted readmission rates that were significantly higher than the statewide average, and an equal number had risk-adjusted readmission rates that were significantly lower.

Data in the CABG report came from 40 non-federal hospitals in New York and covered 8,242 patients discharged in the same time period after having a CABG. During a CABG surgery, a vein or artery from another part of the body is used to create an alternate path for blood to flow to the heart, bypassing the arterial blockage.

Across New York, the 30-day readmission rate for CABG was 14.96 percent. The hospital risk-adjusted readmission rates range from 9.52 percent to 24.06 percent. Three hospitals had risk-adjusted readmission rates that were significantly higher than the statewide average, and two hospitals had risk-adjusted readmission rates that were significantly lower.

Data on readmissions come from the Statewide Planning and Research Cooperative System (SPARCS), which contains data on all acute care hospital discharges in the state, including those that occur within 30 days.

Working cooperatively with hospitals, the Department collects clinical data for every patient in the state undergoing PCI and CABG and compiles them in two databases: the Percutaneous Coronary Interventions Reporting System (PCIRS) and the Cardiac Surgery Reporting System (CSRS). These databases undergo careful auditing and rigorous statistical analyses after which risk-adjusted mortality rates for hospitals and physicians are made available to both providers and the public.

Gauging readmission rates has become an important priority as the state works to improve the quality of health care while reducing costs. As part of the reporting system, hospitals can track their own data and compare their experience to statewide outcomes. Patients can use the data to help them determine where to have cardiac procedures.

The 2011 PCI and 2011 CABG reports are available on the State Health Department’s website at:

For additional cardiovascular disease data and statistics, please visit: