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Improving benchmarking by using an explicit framework for the development of composite indicators: an example using pediatric quality of care

Author(s): Profit Jochen | Typpo Katri | Hysong Sylvia | Woodard LeChauncy | Kallen Michael | Petersen Laura

Journal: Implementation Science
ISSN 1748-5908

Volume: 5;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 13;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Abstract Background The measurement of healthcare provider performance is becoming more widespread. Physicians have been guarded about performance measurement, in part because the methodology for comparative measurement of care quality is underdeveloped. Comprehensive quality improvement will require comprehensive measurement, implying the aggregation of multiple quality metrics into composite indicators. Objective To present a conceptual framework to develop comprehensive, robust, and transparent composite indicators of pediatric care quality, and to highlight aspects specific to quality measurement in children. Methods We reviewed the scientific literature on composite indicator development, health systems, and quality measurement in the pediatric healthcare setting. Frameworks were selected for explicitness and applicability to a hospital-based measurement system. Results We synthesized various frameworks into a comprehensive model for the development of composite indicators of quality of care. Among its key premises, the model proposes identifying structural, process, and outcome metrics for each of the Institute of Medicine's six domains of quality (safety, effectiveness, efficiency, patient-centeredness, timeliness, and equity) and presents a step-by-step framework for embedding the quality of care measurement model into composite indicator development. Conclusions The framework presented offers researchers an explicit path to composite indicator development. Without a scientifically robust and comprehensive approach to measurement of the quality of healthcare, performance measurement will ultimately fail to achieve its quality improvement goals.
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