Intravenous albumin utilization audit at a large community hospital

Link to article at PubMed

Transfusion. 2023 Dec 11. doi: 10.1111/trf.17610. Online ahead of print.


BACKGROUND: There is a literature gap in terms of albumin utilization practices.

METHODS/MATERIALS: We conducted a single-center retrospective observational electronic audit of adult admitted patients who received one or more vials of albumin (5% or 25%) between September 1, 2019 and August 31, 2020 at a large community hospital. The Research Ethics Board approval was obtained. Utilization data identified through the laboratory information system were independently adjudicated by two reviewers and resolved by consensus as appropriate-acceptable, appropriate-may be acceptable, or inappropriate. The primary objective of this audit is to determine the proportion of 5% and 25% intravenous albumin infusions meeting a priori appropriateness criteria for indication. Secondary outcomes include determining the patterns of practice surrounding intravenous albumin use: patient demographics, most responsible diagnosis, location at time of order, clinical outcomes of albumin recipients, and types, volumes, and cost of albumin infused.

RESULTS: The mean total albumin administered was 569.2 mL across 456 total recipients (58% male) with a 29% appropriateness rate. This cohort had an in-hospital mortality rate of 38%, with an average of 6 days from first dose of albumin to death. The mean length of stay was 14 days, with a mean intensive care length of stay of 8 days. The purchase cost of inappropriately transfused albumin was CAD $65,538.

CONCLUSION: Based on a lack of or an unacceptable indication provided, 71% of patients were inappropriately transfused. Albumin use deviating from guideline recommendations may be contributing to increased healthcare costs, pressure on limited supply, and potential patient harm.

PMID:38078484 | DOI:10.1111/trf.17610

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