Purchase Print Copy

 FormatList Price
Add to Cart Paperback47 pages Free

In September 1998, the Advisory Commission on Consumer Protection and Quality in the Health Care Industry released its final report on how to define, measure, and promote quality of health care. With new organizational structures and reimbursement strategies that may affect quality of care, the health care system has undergone a dramatic transformation. Concerns about potentially negative consequences prompted a movement to assure that quality will not be sacrificed to control costs. This study reviews the academic literature on quality of care in the U.S. and provides an overview of quality of care delivery across diverse settings, conditions, and demographic groups. Quality of care in the U.S. varies among hospitals, cities, and states, some of it outstanding, but much of it not meeting professional standards. A systematic strategy for routine monitoring and reporting on quality is essential to preserve quality and to improve efficiency of high-quality health services.

Originally published in: The Milbank Quarterly, v. 76, no. 4, 1998, pp. 517-563.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Reprint series. The Reprint was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1992 to 2011 that represented previously published journal articles, book chapters, and reports with the permission of the publisher. RAND reprints were formally reviewed in accordance with the publisher's editorial policy and compliant with RAND's rigorous quality assurance standards for quality and objectivity. For select current RAND journal articles, see External Publications.

Our mission to help improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis is enabled through our core values of quality and objectivity and our unwavering commitment to the highest level of integrity and ethical behavior. To help ensure our research and analysis are rigorous, objective, and nonpartisan, we subject our research publications to a robust and exacting quality-assurance process; avoid both the appearance and reality of financial and other conflicts of interest through staff training, project screening, and a policy of mandatory disclosure; and pursue transparency in our research engagements through our commitment to the open publication of our research findings and recommendations, disclosure of the source of funding of published research, and policies to ensure intellectual independence. For more information, visit www.rand.org/about/principles.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.