Year-to-year trends in emergency medicine morbidity and mortality cases

Jason J. Lewis, Eric C. Hyder, Carlo Rosen, Richard E. Wolfe, Victor Novack, Shamai A. Grossman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Morbidity and Mortality (M&M) rounds are peer review conferences during which cases with adverse outcomes and difficult management decisions are presented. Their primary objective is to learn from complications and errors, modify behavior and judgment based on previous experiences, and prevent repetition of errors leading to complications. The objective of this study was to determine if M&M conferences can reduce repetitive error making demonstrated by a shift of the incidence of cases presented at M&M by chief complaint (CC) and experience of attendings. Methods: All M&M cases from 1/1/2014–12/31/2017 derived from an urban, tertiary referral Emergency Department were reviewed and grouped into 12 different CC categories and by attending years of experience (1–4, 5–9 and 10+). Number and percent of M&M cases by CC and years of attending experience were calculated by year and a chi-squared analysis was performed. Results: 350 M&M cases were presented over the four-year study period. There was a significant difference between CC categories from year-to-year (p < 0.001). Attendings with 1–4 years of experience had the majority of cases (46.3%), while those with 5–9 years had the fewest total cases (15.1%, p < 0.001). Conclusions: There was a persistent significant difference across CC categories of M&M cases from year-to-year, with down-trending and up-trending of specific CCs suggesting that M&M presentation may prevent repetitive errors. Newer attendings show increased rates of M&M cases relative to more experienced attendings. There may be a distinctive educational benefit of participation at M&M for attendings with fewer than five years of clinical experience.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1658-1661
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Emergency Medicine
Issue number8
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • M&M
  • Medical education
  • Morbidity and mortality
  • Quality assurance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine


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