Children's Hospitals Today - Spring 2017 - 29

5 MINUTES WITH... / VITALS

PHIS
NEWS
500 published articles
feature PHIS data
The Pediatric Health
Information System (PHIS) is
celebrating a big milestone:
more than 500 peer-reviewed
journal articles have been
published since its inception.
The analytic program, which
includes 20-plus years of
inpatient data, provides
clinical quality and research
experts with insights into
resource use variation,
clinical effectiveness,
readmissions and more.

RESEARCH
Collaborating with
pediatric researchers
As part of the PHIS program,
CHA supports physicianled research groups. The
patient data available in
PHIS allows investigators
to create new knowledge on
common and rare pediatric
conditions. At any time,
20 projects are in various
stages of development
and organized in themes:
clinical, operational and
policy research. Each
project typically takes six
to 12 months to complete.
The program provides an
efficient and cost-effective
way to conduct health
services research that
benefits children health and
children's hospitals.
Learn more about PHIS and
research at childrenshospitals
.org/phis.

Richard Aplenc
This researcher, who specializes in caring for children with
leukemia, shares how data helps him do his work.

O

ne of the first patients Richard Aplenc,
M.D., Ph.D., MSCE, treated had acute
myelogenous leukemia (AML). His experience caring for this patient led him to a
career in research as a core faculty member of the Center for Pediatric Clinical
Effectiveness at Children's Hospital of
Philadelphia. Today, his work is focused
on the treatment of AML. Here's how the
Pediatric Health Information System
(PHIS) helps him conduct research.
What does the availability of PHIS data
mean for your work? We could not do this
research with any other dataset in the
world except PHIS. CHA is willing to allow us to use the data in novel ways, like
merging it with data from the Children's
Oncology Group, the Center for National
Blood and Marrow Transplant and the
United Network for Organ Sharing.
How has this affected clinical care? We've
known African American children are more
likely to die from AML than Caucasian
children, but the cause was unclear. PHIS
data show African American children have
a higher chance of dying with a first course
of AML chemotherapy. About 60 percent
of that increased risk is because they are
sicker when they get to the hospital. PHIS
data also showed we aren't treating children differently when they get to the hospital. That was meaningful. It tells us if we
want to change this disparity, we need to
understand the barriers to coming to the
hospital for some within this population.
This has led us down a new line of research
to develop an intervention.
What is the most creative way you've
used PHIS? We look at groups of patients
with newly diagnosed leukemia by using a
combination of their discharge codes with
their billing data. In pediatric cancer, that

approach improves the ability to have a homogenous patient population, which allows
you to answer questions in new ways.
What should clinicians who don't use PHIS
know? It allows you to follow patients over
time and look at their billed inpatient and
ED care. It should be possible to do something similar with Medicaid data, but PHIS
is easier to access. It takes expertise to work
with the data in a sophisticated way, but
you learn by doing.
Research using PHIS has generated more
than 500 published studies. How has this
affected the industry? One of the issues
with studying children-there are fewer
children than adults. It's often hard at any
one center to get enough patients to do studies that are meaningful. PHIS addresses
this because hospitals are federating their
billing data to create a data resource. There
is no other country in the world that has the
richness of data for this number of pediatric patients. When I started writing grants,
there were 200 PHIS-related publications.
Now there are more than 500. This speaks
to the importance of the data source to the
pediatric community.

CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL S TODAY Spring 2017

29


http://childrenshospitals.org/phis http://childrenshospitals.org/phis

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Children's Hospitals Today - Spring 2017

Contents
Children's Hospitals Today - Spring 2017 - Cover1
Children's Hospitals Today - Spring 2017 - Cover2
Children's Hospitals Today - Spring 2017 - Contents
Children's Hospitals Today - Spring 2017 - 2
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