We summarize the levels below, showing both increasing complexity and increasing impact. We’d love to talk with you in more detail about how you can focus in on your quality improvement opportunities. As you go up the scale in quality maturity, you will find more consistent, reliable data and to add actionable insight to your initiatives, allowing you to realize bigger impacts.
Level 1: Submitting Measures
The foundation of quality reporting is submitting required measures. The infrastructure and fluency you require to comply with measure submission sets the stage for the efforts you need to ascend the remaining maturity levels. Submission is a feat in itself, given the hundreds of measures to report to comply with requirements for programs including HIQR, HVBP, and MU.
Level 2: Validating Data-Capture Workflows
Even if you feel confident in your submission process, your workflows are probably not as consistent as you think they are. In fact, the way your clinicians interact with the system may not match your designed and documented workflows at all. The best way to ensure your quality measure data is complete and reliable is to review and (re) document the place where users should enter the data.
Level 3: Managing Some Measure Data
You now feel comfortable with your clinicians’ use of the system and your submission process, so you are ready to take advantage of the information at your disposal. In addition to users interpreting meaningful information presented via a BI or analytics tool, you’ll need to establish data and metric definitions, processes for prioritizing requests for data, and ongoing efforts to evaluate data integrity.
Level 4: Leveraging Measures to Inform Care Improvement Initiatives
Level 4 requires more fluency with the factors that contribute to deficiencies in quality, such as the communication barriers to faster ED turnarounds or the standardization of supplies to facilitate consistent reporting on central line infection rates. Level 4 also requires infrastructure to plan and manage an initiative not just to the completion of the project, but through the analysis of the impact.
Level 5: Strong Physician Engagement
Want the maximum impact for your quality improvement endeavors? You need physician engagement at all levels. By educating physicians on the big picture of patient care and the health impacts of an initiative, they can recognize the consequences of skipping a step in the care of each individual patient. When your physicians support how decisions are made using quality data, they are also more likely to buy in to the effort to ensure the data is complete.
Quality reporting is an increasing part of our healthcare responsibilities, and it doesn’t show signs of slowing. Take stock of your current quality maturity state to formulate a realistic plan, and start reaping the benefits of improved patient care and reduced waste. It’s not only the right thing for your organization, it’s what your patients expect and deserve from you.