Abstract

Many hospitals are adopting quality improvement strategies in obstetrics. This study characterized rural U.S. hospitals based on their hospital staffing and clinical management policies for labor induction and cesarean delivery, and assessed the relationship between policies and performance on maternity care quality. We surveyed all 306 rural maternity hospitals in nine states and used data from the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project Statewide Inpatient Database hospital discharge database. We found staffing policies were more prevalent at lower-volume hospitals (92% vs. 86% for cesarean and 82% vs. 79%, both p < .01). Using multivariable logistic regression, we found hospitals with policies for cesarean delivery had up to 24% lower odds of low-risk cesarean (adjusted odds ratio = 0.76; 95% confidence interval=[0.67–0.86]) and non-indicated cesarean (0.78 [0.70–0.88]), with variability across birth volume. Clinical management and staffing policies are common, but not universal, among rural U.S. hospitals providing obstetric services and are generally positively associated with quality.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1548-6869
Print ISSN
1049-2089
Pages
pp. 128-143
Launched on MUSE
2016-11-02
Open Access
No
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