Mortality Reviews

For those of you who perform mortality reviews, could you provide some guidance on reportable secondary diagnoses that can be queried for after the fact? Example: patient admitted for PNA, AECOPD and AHRF and expired a day later. Labs drawn during arrest revealed lactic acidosis, AKI, and thrombocytopenia (not documented as such by the provider). These labs were not available until after the patient expired. It contributed to the patient's death but wasn't treated. Can you/should you query for these? My initial thought was no. Can someone direct me to additional information to provide future guidance?

Thank you,



  • I'd say you could query.

    I understand how people may say that it wasn't treated, it's similar to people deciding they can't query for conditions once the patient is converted to comfort measures only.

    My thought process on both scenarios, as you mentioned above, is that those conditions contributed to the death of the patient, or the decision to make them comfort measures only. If they did not die, would they have repeated the labs and intervened?

    If a patient has a STEMI and dies as they enter the ED, did they not have an MI because there wasn't opportunity to treat? or even if the patient and family refuse treatment, does that mean it wasn't a valid condition?

    At least that is my perspective.

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