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BACKGROUND: Despite national increase in pediatric ethics consultation volume over the past decade, protected time and resources for healthcare ethics consultancy work has lagged.
METHODS: Correlation study investigating potential associations between ethics consult volume reported by recent national survey of consultants at children's hospitals and five programmatic domains.
RESULTS: 104 children's hospitals in 45 states plus Washington DC were included. There was not a statistically significant association between pediatric ethics consult volume and hospital size, rurality of patient population, or number of consultants. Academically-affiliated children's hospitals had fewer ethics consults compared to nonacademically affiliated. Association was found between full-time equivalent (FTE) hours and number of ethics consults (p < 0.0001). Spearman rank correlation between ethics consult volume and FTE was 0.5.
CONCLUSIONS: While the results of this study should be interpreted with caution, investment in protected time for ethics consultancy work may translate into increased volume of pediatric ethics consults.