By: Lisa Remington, President, Remington Health Strategy Group, Publisher, The Remington Report
The National Quality Forum’s (NQF) report on Consideration for Implementing Measures in Federal Programs: Post-acute Care and Long-Term Care shed light on current program measures, the IMPACT Act, gaps, and recommendations for the future. This is a must read.
Referred to as MAP (Measure Applications Partnership), MAP is a multi-stakeholder partnership that guides the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on the selection of performance measures for federal health programs. Congress recognized in 2010 the benefit of an approach that encourages consensus building among diverse private- and public-sector stakeholders. Importantly, it provides a coordinated look across federal programs at performance measures being considered.
The report identifies there are crucial measurement gaps remaining in the PAC/LTC programs, especially in the areas of care coordination and transfer of information across care settings.
What does MAP do?
Since 2011, HHS has called upon MAP to recommend measures most appropriate for public reporting, performance-based payment, and other uses. One of MAP’s key initiatives is to convene stakeholders for an intensive annual review of the quality measures being considered by HHS for 20-plus federal health programs. More recently, MAP has provided input to HHS on assessing the quality of care for the nearly 10 million Americans enrolled in both Medicare and Medicaid due to very low income and complex healthcare needs. Another recent initiative is recommending core measures for assessing the quality of care for adults in Medicaid and ensuring that the measure set evolve over time. In 2014, MAP began work on a core set of measures for children enrolled in Medicaid. HHS is guided by the recommendations from all of these projects as it finalizes measures for programs, which helps to improve care quality for the more than 100 million Americans covered by these federal health programs.
"The report identifies there are crucial measurement gaps remaining in the PAC/LTC programs, especially in the areas of care coordination and transfer of information across care settings."
In convening MAP, the National Quality Forum (NQF) brings together representatives of consumers, businesses and purchasers, labor, health plans, clinicians and providers, communities and states, and suppliers. MAP’s careful balance of these stakeholder interests ensures that the federal government will receive varied and thoughtful input on performance measure selection. As of this year, MAP involves approximately 150 healthcare leaders and experts representing nearly 90 private-sector organizations, as well as liaisons from seven federal agencies.
MAP’s work fosters the use of a more uniform set of measures in federal programs and across the public and private sectors. This uniformity helps providers better identify key areas in which to improve quality; reduces wasteful data collection for hospitals, physicians, and nurses; and helps to curb the proliferation of redundant measures which could confuse patients and payers.