This fact sheet provides an overview of the AHRQ Quality Indicators™ Toolkit for Hospitals, an online resource designed to facilitate use of the Patient Safety Indicators and Inpatient Quality Indicators.
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The AHRQ Quality Indicators™ Toolkit for Hospitals is a free set of tools designed to support hospitals in assessing and improving the quality and safety of care they provide: http://www.ahrq.gov/qual/qitoolkit.
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) Quality Indicators (QIs) are measures of hospital quality and safety drawn from readily available hospital inpatient administrative data. They include:
Hospitals across the country are using the IQIs and PSIs to identify potential concerns about quality and safety and track their performance over time.
The QI Toolkit supports hospitals that want to improve performance on the IQIs and PSIs by guiding them through the process, from the first stage of self-assessment to the final stage of ongoing monitoring. The tools are practical, easy to use, and designed to meet a variety of needs, including those of senior leaders, quality staff, and multistakeholder improvement teams.
Sections of the Hospital QI Toolkit
- Determining Readiness To Change. Tools to help board members and staff better understand the AHRQ QIs and for senior and quality leaders to assess the readiness of their organization to implement improvements.
- Applying QIs to the Hospital Data. Tools to help quality leaders and analysts calculate their AHRQ QI rates and identify documentation and coding issues that can affect those rates.
- Identifying Priorities for Quality Improvement. Tools to help senior leaders and quality staff determine where to focus improvement efforts.
- Implementing Improvements. Tools to support the team in applying quality improvement methods to implement changes in practices. One tool provides instructions for applying best practices for the PSIs.
- Monitoring Progress for Sustainable Improvement. Tools to support quality staff in tracking trends in performance on the measures.
- Analyzing Return on Investment. Tools to help senior leaders estimate the return on investment from improvement efforts around the AHRQ QIs.
- Using Other Resources. A case study plus tools to help quality staff identify other resources to support quality improvement.
What You Need To Know About the Toolkit
- The design and content reflect a careful development and evaluation process. A national panel of experts on quality, safety, and improvement methods guided the project and reviewed the tools. In addition, the tools were tested in six hospitals.
- The toolkit helps you choose the tools that are most appropriate and helpful to you. The "Introduction and Roadmap" makes it easy for hospitals to identify the tools that meet their specific needs at a given point in time.
- The toolkit has applications beyond the AHRQ QIs. Many of the tools address the quality improvement process more generally, so hospitals can use them to tackle a range of quality goals.
Explore the Toolkit
Download the Hospital QI Toolkit from the AHRQ QI Web site: www.ahrq.gov/qual/qitoolkit. Start with the "Introduction and Roadmap" for an overview of all the available tools.
Questions? Contact the QI Support Team:
Learn about free resources to help users of the Hospital QI Toolkit, including Webinars and podcasts, by registering for the AHRQ QI Email list. Instructions for registering are available at www.qualityindicators.ahrq.gov/FAQs_Support/default.aspx.
AHRQ Publication No. 12-M038-EF
Current as of June 2012
AHRQ Quality Indicators™ Toolkit for Hospitals: Fact Sheet. AHRQ Publication No. 12-M038-EF, June 2012. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/qual/qitoolkit/qifactsheet.htm