Feds Publish Medicaid Quality Measures

The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services has published an initial core set of 26 quality measures for states to use in evaluating the performance of Medicaid programs, applicable to both managed care and fee-for-service providers. As mandated by the Affordable Care Act, HHS was charged with developing a uniform set of performance measures in advance of implementing a national, voluntary Medicaid public reporting program to begin in the fall of 2014. Of the 26 measures included in the final notice published in the January 4, 2012 Federal Register, twelve address prevention/health promotion; three address acute conditions, seven address chronic care, and two address family experiences, with a single care coordination measure and another addressing availability of care. The vast majority of measures are derived from the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) and the U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. According to HHS: “States that choose to collect the initial core set will be better positioned to measure their performance and develop action plans to achieve the three part aims of better care, healthier people, and affordable care as identified in HHS’ National Strategy for Quality Improvement in Health Care.” For more on the National Quality Strategy, visit http://www.ahrq.gov/workingforquality/nqs.