- 2020;23;17-24Demographic Factors Associated with Patient-Reported Outcome Measures in Pain Management
Jihad Abdelgadir, MD, Edmund W. Ong, PhD, Salma M. Abdalla, MD, John C. Hunting, MPH, Mohamed Mustafa Diab, MD, Michael M. Haglund, MD, PhD, C. Rory Goodwin, MD, PhD, Amanda Nelli, MD, and Padma Gulur, MD.
BACKGROUND: Pain control is strongly correlated with the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) quality-of-care domains and overall hospital experience. Prior research implicates several factors in the variability of patients’ pain management satisfaction scores, including but not limited to racial diversity, ethnic diversity, gender, socioeconomic status, and other cultural factors.
OBJECTIVE: In this study, we examined responses to the HCAHPS survey in order to assess factors associated with patient-reported experiences of pain management.
STUDY DESIGN: The study design involved a retrospective analysis of patient survey responses.
SETTING: The research took place at a university-affiliated tertiary hospital.
METHODS: The study was conducted in a university-affiliated tertiary hospital. Records for adult patients discharged between October 2015 and June 2017 were included. We obtained all patient responses to the HCAHPS pain management questions. We then performed a systematic statistical analysis to evaluate interactions between demographic factor variables and responses to the HCAHPS pain management questions.
RESULTS: Between October 2015 and June 2017, 107,287 patients were discharged from the hospital. Of these, 13,026 of the respondents answered at least one of the HCAHPS pain management questions.
Among HCAHPS pain-domain respondents, “Hispanic” and “Black or African American” respondents are more likely to report successful Pain Control when compared to “Not Hispanic” and “Caucasian/White,” respectively (odds ratios [ORs] 1.60, 1.22). Additionally, among women, “Black or African American” respondents are more likely to report positive Staff Helpfulness than “Caucasian/White” respondents (OR 1.38).
However, we also identified corresponding associations among HCAHPS pain-question responding and patient race/ethnicity: “Hispanic” and “Black/African American” patients were each less likely to respond to the HCAHPS pain questions (ORs 2.03, 2.74).
LIMITATIONS: The primary limitation to this study was nonresponse bias; nevertheless, this is likely to be similar to bias experienced at other institutions. Additionally, this is a single institution study; however, given that the institution has a very large catchment area, we believe the results could be generalized to other settings.
CONCLUSION: Response rates and responses to HCAHPS pain questions vary by race/ethnicity and sex. It appears likely that Hispanic and Black/African American patients underreport negative experiences. As HCAHPS surveys are used to inform decision-making within the US health care system, demographic biases in the survey data could lead to biases in care and resource allocation.
KEY WORDS: Pain, HCAHPS, patient reported outcome measures, patient satisfaction, ethnicity, race