3-Point Framework for Expanded Outpatient Quality Measurement

Share on Facebook
The current measures of outpatient quality exclude important aspects of quality such as safety and effectiveness, according to a viewpoint piece in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Currently, most outpatient measures focus on preventive care and chronic disease management and fail to include measures of safety, effectiveness, coordination and efficiency. This narrow view of quality may cause providers to focus less on other important facets of quality, which may reduce overall quality. To change this limited measurement of outpatient quality, the author suggests a new framework that is more inclusive of different aspects of quality. She suggests the following measures:

Sign up for our FREE E-Weekly for more coverage like this sent to your inbox!


•    Safety. Safety measures can include never events, such as medication errors, failure to inform patients of test results, healthcare-acquired infections and failure to monitor for adverse effects of treatments.
•    Preventive and chronic disease care. This measure includes process measures such as rates of vaccination, preventive cancer screening and use of chronic medications.
•    High level of quality. This measure includes diagnostic accuracy, appropriate use of resources and treatment decisions for rare or complex diseases. Surrogate measures, such as physician reputation, physician training or patients' trust in their physicians, may indicate outpatient quality if research shows a correlation between these measures and more objective measures of high-quality care, according to the author.

The outpatient community should focus more on the first and third measures, as the second — preventive and chronic disease care — is already well represented in quality measures, according to the perspective piece.

More Articles on Quality Measures:

4 Best Practices for Implementing the ASC Quality Reporting Program
Study: Physicians' Quality Improvement Spurred by Public Reporting

Survey: Physicians Perform Poorly on Patient-Centered Care Measures

© Copyright ASC COMMUNICATIONS 2012. Interested in LINKING to or REPRINTING this content? View our policies by clicking here.

 

New From Becker's Infection Control & Clinical Quality

10 Things to Know About Infection Control

Read Now