Authors: Fong ZV, Chang DC, Hur C, Jin G, Tramontano A, Sell NM, Warshaw AL, Fernandez-Del Castillo C, Ferrone CR, Lillemoe KD, Qadan M
Title: Variation in long-term oncologic outcomes by type of cancer center accreditation: An analysis of a SEER-Medicare population with pancreatic cancer.
Journal: Am J Surg :-
Date: 2020 Apr 02
PubMed ID: 32265013
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Cancer center accreditation is designed to identify centers that provide high-quality cancer care. This also guides patients and referring physicians towards centers of excellence for specialized care. We sought to examine if cancer center accreditation was associated with improved long-term oncologic outcomes in patients with pancreatic adenocarcinoma. METHODS: Using the SEER-Medicare database, we identified patients who underwent pancreatectomy for pancreatic adenocarcinoma from 1996 to 2013. Hospitals were categorized into three groups: National Cancer Institute-designated (NCI-designated) centers, Commission on Cancer (CoC)-accredited centers, and "non-accredited" (NA) centers. Multilevel mixed-effects models were used to calculate adjusted examined lymph nodes, disease-specific survival (DSS), and overall survival (OS). RESULTS: We identified 5,118 patients who underwent pancreatectomy at 632 hospitals (41.0% NA, 49.6% CoC, 9.4% NCI). NCI-designated centers had a greater median number of lymph nodes examined compared with CoC-accredited or NA centers (14 vs. 10 vs. 11.0 nodes, respectively; p < 0.001). Patients treated at NCI centers had a higher 5-year DSS compared to those treated at CoC or NA centers (31.2% vs. 23.6% vs. 23.0%, respectively; p < 0.001). Finally, patients treated at NCI centers had a higher 5-year OS compared to those treated at CoC or NA centers (23.5% vs. 18.9% vs. 17.9%, respectively; p < 0.001). The associations held true when adjusted analyses were performed. CONCLUSION: Patients with resected pancreatic cancer treated at NCI-designated centers were associated with improved long-term oncologic outcomes. There was no difference between CoC-accredited centers compared with NA centers. Meticulous validation of accreditation is warranted globally prior to implementation.