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How Do We Improve Data Collection and Exchange Following COVID-19?

How Do We Improve Data Collection and Exchange Following COVID-19?

How Do We Improve Data Collection and Exchange Following COVID-19? Christopher Jason answers this question in an article at EHR Intelligence.

 

Reducing measurement burden, addressing the lag in reporting data quality, and improving data standardization will be key to boosting clinical quality measurement, according to a recent journal article published in JAMA Network.

“There is a lack of information that would help clinicians improve care delivery in the moment and learn for the future,” J. Matthew Austin, PhD, and Allen Kachalia, MD, wrote in the article. “This situation highlights how the current approach to quality and safety measurement remains too labor intensive, contains significant data lags, and lacks sufficient standardization that allows for rapid sharing of data.”

Once the pandemic began to spread at a rapid rate, it was mightily apparent that measuring healthcare quality was not going to be sustainable. As a result, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced it was allowing exceptions for data submissions for Medicare quality programs due to the patient surges.

However, Austin and Kachalia said if the healthcare system did not rely on manual abstraction and human intervention, CMS would not have had to suspend quality reporting requirements.

“To date, health care has approached quality measurement too much as an ancillary matter, treating it as a double-check after care is delivered, rather than information evaluated simultaneously with the provision of care,” the authors explained. “The current approach, therefore, is simply not resilient enough when attention and resources need to be focused elsewhere, such as during the current pandemic.”

Austin and Kachalia also noted the lag between reporting measurements and provision of care. A lag in between these two measures disrupts feedback and framework improvement.

Unfortunately, data lag is magnified during a crisis and learning opportunities are missed by the time data is available.

“The current approach to quality measurement is also challenged by the insufficient standardization of data for purposes of data sharing,” explained the authors. “When health systems provide care to patients with new types of clinical problems, or provide care in new ways for which there are no standards, it can be helpful for health systems to be able compare their performance with the performance of other health systems.”…

 

Read the rest of the article here.

 

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