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06-02-2013 | Article

Healthcare experts provide HHS with pre-rulemaking guidelines


MAP full report

medwireNews: The Measure Applications Partnership (MAP) has released its second cycle of pre-rulemaking recommendations to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), which will help prioritize a selection of performance measures when assessing the effectiveness of various federal health programs.

Out of more than 500 potential measures that MAP began to consider over a year ago, the partnership immediately supported 141 for federal programs that relate to clinician, hospital, and post-acute care as well as long-term care settings. MAP tentatively supported the direction of another 166 measures depending on further development, testing, or National Quality Forum (NQF) endorsement while 165 measures did not gain support in addition to 64 measures recommended for phasing out.

The public-private partnership was created by the NQF and consists of a "carefully balanced" assortment of 110 members who are representative of consumers, business and purchasers, labor, health plans, clinicians, hospitals, and other providers - among numerous other entities.

"MAP's diverse nature and unique collaborative process ensures varied, thoughtful recommendations on the measures under consideration by HHS for future federal rulemaking from those who are on the frontlines of using measures and measurement information," according to an NQF statement.

"MAP's recommendations are meant to promote the selection of measures that will drive improvement for those providing care, transparency for those seeking care, and value for those paying for care," said Elizabeth McGlynn, co-chair of the MAP Coordinating Committee, in a press release.

Public and private sectors that are on the same page with how they assess various health projects is expected to alleviate the measurement burden that providers often face and increase "the meaningfulness of measurement information that is increasingly used by consumers and others who purchase healthcare services," explains the report.

Guiding much of the pre-rulemaking process was the shared understanding of the importance of a patient-centered approach to measurements. The panel also considered the need for performance measurements to take into account provider accountability and the general responsibility to "address diverse needs and fragmented care, particularly of vulnerable populations."

The panel also highlighted the need to link clinical outcome measures to cost measures; "All stakeholders should be cognizant of the costs of care," the MAP partnership concludes.

By Peter Sergo, medwireNews Reporter