NQF to Host Webinar Exploring Current Systems and Approaches to Tracking Healthcare Measures

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NQF will host a public webinar that will explore systems or approaches currently in use for gathering, storing and accessing measure information

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has contracted with the National Quality Forum (NQF) to explore key issues and considerations regarding the development of a consistent approach or system for gathering, storing, and accessing information on healthcare quality measures. Quality measurement and reporting efforts in healthcare have expanded substantially in recent years. While this is a positive step toward improving the quality and safety of care, keeping track of the sheer number of metrics or ‘measures’ in various versions, their application and use, and endorsement status has become a challenge.

On Thursday, July 26, at 1:00pm ET, NQF will host the “Measure Registry Needs Assessment Webinar: Exploration of Information Systems” (http://bit.ly/NZyvRn). This public webinar will explore systems or approaches currently in use for gathering, storing and accessing measure information. The webinar will feature presentations from five organizations about the systems and approaches they have developed and use to track healthcare measures. Each group will share their practices and processes for managing measure information. The organizations presenting on the webinar will be: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services; The Joint Commission; Kaiser Permanente; and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.    

Currently, information on measures is collected and maintained in a variety of ways by many types of organizations, including those who develop measures; those who endorse measures; certification or accreditation groups; federal agencies; and a wide range of groups who use measures such as health plans, hospital and medical systems, other providers of health services, local and state agencies, and community alliances. The proliferation of different approaches, and the complexity around keeping track of the details associated with new versions of measures, has spurred interest in whether there is a case to be made for creating a standardized approach or system for tracking measures.

“As a neutral convener, NQF is uniquely positioned to gather perspectives and information from many interested groups who are involved in some way with quality measures,” said Tom Valuck, MD, JD, senior vice president of Strategic Partnerships at NQF. “By presenting this information in a public forum, interested parties will have the opportunity to learn from each other, and discuss the key issues for determining whether a more consistent approach ought to be developed and, if so, what needs to be considered in the process.”

Additionally, NQF will host an in-person, multi-stakeholder meeting on September 5 to more deeply explore the issues raised during the assessment’s information gathering activities, which include interviews with more than 15 organizations and responses gathered from an open Call for Information in May. The findings will be presented to HHS in a final report, documenting insights, trade-offs, and any recommendations that emerge from these activities.    

Registration for the “Measure Registry Needs Assessment Webinar: Exploration of Information Systems,” (http://bit.ly/NZyvRn) is now available online. To learn more about the Measure Registry Needs Assessment project, please visit http://www.qualityforum.org/RNA.

NQF operates under a three-part mission to improve the quality of American healthcare by:

  •     building consensus on national priorities and goals for performance improvement and working in partnership to achieve them;
  •     endorsing national consensus standards for measuring and publicly reporting on performance; and
  •     promoting the attainment of national goals through education and outreach programs.

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Erin Reese
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