Institutional factors associated with adherence to quality measures for stage I and II non–small cell lung cancer

ThORN Collaborative

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Objective: Although previous studies have identified variation in quality lung cancer care, existing quality metrics may not fully capture the complexity of cancer care. The Thoracic Surgery Outcomes Research Network recently developed quality measures to address this. We evaluated baseline adherence to these measures and identified factors associated with adherence. Methods: Patients with pathologic stage I and II non–small cell lung cancer from 2010 to 2015 were identified in the National Cancer Database. Patient-level and hospital-level adherence to 7 quality measures was calculated. Goal hospital adherence threshold was 85%. Factors influencing adherence were identified using multilevel logistic regression. Results: We identified 253,182 patients from 1324 hospitals. Lymph node sampling was performed in 91% of patients nationally, but only 76% of hospitals met the 85% adherence mark. Similarly, 89% of T1b (seventh edition staging) tumors had anatomic resection, with 69% hospital-level adherence. Sixty-nine percent of pathologic stage II patients were recommended chemotherapy, with only 23% hospitals adherent. Eighty-three percent of patients had biopsy before primary radiation, with 64% hospitals adherent. Higher volume and academic institutions were associated with nonadherence to adjuvant chemotherapy and radiation therapy measures. Conversely, lower volume and nonacademic institutions were associated with inadequate nodal sampling and nonanatomic resection. Conclusions: Significant gaps continue to exist in the delivery of quality care to patients with early-stage lung cancer. High-volume academic hospitals had higher adherence for surgical care measures, but lower rates for coordination of care measures. This requires further investigation, but suggests targets for quality improvement may vary by institution type.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)649-660.e8
JournalJournal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2021


  • lung cancer
  • outcomes
  • process measure
  • quality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Surgery


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