Measuring the Quality of Health Care

Published in: The National Roundtable on Health Care Quality / edited by M. S. Donaldson (Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 1999)

by Mark R. Chassin, Robert S. Galvin, Kathleen O. Angel, Marcia Angell, Robert A. Berenson, Robert H. Brook, Ezra C, Jr Davidson, Arnold M. Epstein, Clifton Gaus, Charlene Harrington, et al.

This policy paper extends efforts by the Institute of Medicine to inform policymakers, provider organizations and clinicians, purchasers, and consumers about the measurement of health care quality--its uses, methods, promise and current challenges. It is based on a conference held at the IOM in September 1996, "Measuring Quality of Care: State of the Art" and the conclusions of the members of the National Roundtable on Health Care Quality. The paper describes quality of care based on the IOM's 1990 definition, then outlines the burden of harm resulting from poor quality. It then describes major approaches to and recent advances in quality measurement. Finally, it describes some of the challenges facing this field.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation External publication series. Many RAND studies are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, as chapters in commercial books, or as documents published by other organizations.

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