Establishing Quality Measures For A Medical Practice

Establishing Quality Measures For A Medical Practice

What Are Quality Measures For Medical Practices?

Quality measures are tools that put metrics to your processes, outcomes, patient perceptions, organizational structure, and systems that affect the quality of care in your practice.

Unlike performance measures, which are focused on external growth, getting new patients, and increasing patient satisfaction — quality measures for medical practices accelerate your internal practice performance. They’re internal metrics that you can transform into goals with the intention to improve your team’s excellence.

Quality measures convey information about your team’s technical care and interpersonal skill. Typically, technical quality is measured using the information found in your administrative databases, electronic health records, or medical charts; while interpersonal quality is measured using patient surveys.

How Do Quality Measurement And Quality Improvement Work Together?

Quality improvement is the framework used to consistently improve your level of care. You can gain insight through quality measure benchmarking and use it to identify variations in your practice’s overall quality. Quality improvement seeks to standardize your team’s processes and structures to reduce variation, achieve better results, and improve outcomes for your patients by elevating your people!

Incorporating Quality Measurement And Quality Improvement Into Your Practice

The primary purpose of quality measurement is to improve your practice’s patient care, but Quality Measurement alone does not lead to improvements in patient outcomes. Paired with Quality Improvement, you can begin to work with your team to accelerate your internal clinical improvement.

What Are Some Examples Of Quality Measures In Health Care?

Patient-Centeredness Measures

  • Reports on the care and service patients received.

Timeliness Measures

  • Reports on the timeliness of care and service patients received.

Descriptive Measures

  • Reports on the use of electronic patient medical records, personal health records, or prescription ordering systems.

Measures and Benchmarks

“Efforts to improve quality need to be measured to demonstrate whether improvement efforts lead to change in the primary endpoint in the desired direction, contribute to unintended results in different parts of the system, and require additional efforts to bring a process back into acceptable ranges.”

— Basics Of Quality Improvement In Health Care | Mayo Clinic Proceedings | Peer-reviewed Journal

In the past 20 years, quality improvement methods have generally emphasized the importance of identifying processes with less-than-ideal outcomes and measuring their key performance attributes. Many quality improvement strategies have come forth, including the International Organization for Standardization ISO 9000, Zero Defects, and Six Sigma.

Your Quality Improvement project can be based on the Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA)

This is a method that has been widely used by the Institute for Healthcare Improvement for rapid cycle improvement. Before beginning, you can ask 3 basic questions to help set your course:

  • What is the goal of the Quality Improvement project?
  • How will it be known whether the goal was reached?
  • What will be done to reach the goal?

The PDSA cycle starts with determining the nature and scope of the problem, what changes can and should be made, and a plan for a specific change. 

Done Desk encourages you to contact us with questions about quality measures and suggestions for how we can help make your team the best it can be. While the healthcare system continues to shift towards more emphasis on quality metrics, there’s still a gap between the expectations of healthcare policies and standards and the realistic care provided by your average healthcare providers.

Coaching in HR can help your whole practice get on the same page and grow together — giving you the extra discipline you’ve been waiting for to deliver quality healthcare and produce consistent results.