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CMS provides more quality metrics for health care professionals and group practices

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently updated both the Physician Compare and Hospital Compare websites to provide current quality performance data for health care professionals and group practices in order to improve online tools that help consumers choose health care providers.

New quality measures have been added to Physician Compare for group practices and Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) and, for the first time, individual health care professionals. These measures focus on the quality of care provided by Medicare physicians and other health care professionals.

Hospital Compare includes information on more than 100 quality measures and over 4,000 hospitals. The website has been refreshed and updated to include new data and several new measures.

“Consumers want trustworthy, reliable, and understandable information about the quality of health care delivered by providers,” says CMS Deputy Administrator and Chief Medical Officer Patrick Conway, M.D., MSc. “Both Physician Compare and Hospital Compare show consumers that they have a choice. This large release of quality measures for hospitals and physicians empowers consumers with information to make more informed health care decisions, encourages health care professionals to strive for higher levels of quality, and drives overall health system improvement.”

The 2014 data released on Physician Compare include:

  • Additional performance scores on preventive care, diabetes, cardiovascular care, and patient safety by some group practices.CMS posted 2014 clinical quality of care measures for approximately 275 group practices who reported as part of Medicare’s quality reporting program, the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS). These quality measures show how well a group practice provides certain types of care to people with Medicare.
  • New performance scores on patients’ experiences with some group practices. CMS posted measures for approximately 290 group practices who reported patient experience measures through the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) for PQRS survey. The CAHPS for PQRS survey asks Medicare patients for feedback regarding their experiences getting care from their group practice.
  • First set of individual health care professional performance scores onpreventive care, cardiovascular care, and patient safety measures. CMS posted 2014 clinical quality of care measures for over 40,000 individual health care professionals who reported as part of PQRS.
  • Updated performance scores for ACOs.CMS posted the 2014 clinical quality of care and patient experience measures for approximately 333 Shared Savings Program ACOs and 20 Pioneer ACOs.

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) required the establishment of the Physician Compare website. The goal of the website is to help consumers make informed choices about the health care they receive from Medicare physicians and other health care professionals; publicly reporting this updated and new quality information will help further that goal. The first quality measures were added to Physician Compare in February 2014. Since then, the number of individuals, groups, and organizations reporting quality data has continued to increase.

The 2014 data released on Hospital Compare include:

  • A new measure for the Inpatient Quality Reporting (IQR) programthat shows whether a hospital uses safe surgery practices before administering anesthesia, before incision and closing, and prior to the patient leaving the operating room for inpatient surgical procedures.
  • Additional data on certain health care-associated infections (HAIs). Information on the Central Line-Associated Bloodstream Infection (CLABSI) and Catheter-Associated Urinary Tract Infection (CAUTI) (NQF # 0139 and 0138) has been updated to include whether these HAIs occurred in patients not only in intensive care units, but also in medical, surgical, and combined medical and surgical ward locations.

The goal of Hospital Compare is to inform patients about hospital quality and to encourage care improvements at the hospital level. Hospital Compare allows patients and family members to simultaneously compare multiple hospitals on their performance related to heart attack, heart failure, pneumonia, surgery, and other conditions.

For the Physician Compare website, click here.

For the Hospital Compare website, click here.

For Texas Medicare Plan Guide, click here.









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