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|Model Public Report Elements: A Sampler|
II. Five Basic Elements (Web Pages) of a Public Report: Options and Examples
The landing page—the first view of the Web site—is key and can either invite users in or drive them away. It can motivate use of the information, help consumers understand the benefits of comparative performance data, and help consumers understand how to apply the information to their choices.
Because using comparative information on provider quality is new to most health care consumers, they need to understand what the information means, how it may help them, and what they can do to improve their chances for excellent care and improved health outcomes. Assume that your target audience of consumers has a limited understanding of the concept of health care quality. You have an opportunity to provide a definition of quality to consumers when they are eager to learn about it, given that they have initiated access to the site. Being clear about what is meant by "health care quality" and explaining that it is now possible to measure and compare health care providers on their quality of care will help set the context for using the information.
1. Motivating use of the information and defining the benefits
It is important to help consumers see how they can use comparative quality information to select a provider or engage providers in a discussion of quality. Making links between consumer concerns and comparative data is one way to achieve this goal. Consumers also may be more motivated to use comparative data if the degree of variability in quality is made explicit and the dangers of receiving poor quality care are clear.
2. Explaining possible uses of the data
Provider quality ratings are new to most consumers, so the report offers an opportunity to help them understand the different ways they can use the information to their benefit.
This site highlights for consumers both how to use the information (top) and the benefits of doing so (bottom excerpt).
Tool: Clinical Quality in Primary Care
Sponsor: Massachusetts Healthcare Quality Partners
3. Communicating about a shared responsibility
Consumers do not always understand what their role is in the care process or that their active participation can increase their chances of a good health outcome. Explicitly communicating that care is a shared responsibility between patients and providers is an important way to reinforce this behavior.
These next examples show strategies for communicating about the different ways consumers can use and benefit from information. The following example uses video to discuss the shared responsibility that patients and providers have in determining quality.
Tool: Doctor Ratings
Sponsor: Maine Health Management Coalition
Here is an example of a disease-specific report that speaks to the importance of the patient's role in the care process.
Sponsor: Minnesota Community Measurement
4. Defining quality of care and providing consumers with a framework for understanding quality
Research shows that when consumers have a better understanding of the larger concept of quality and the elements that make up good quality care, they also tend to have a better understanding of individual quality indicators and view comparative information as more useful.
The example below provides a brief description of what high quality care is, which is referred to as "care that works best."
Tool: Partner for Quality Care
Sponsor: Oregon Health Care Quality Corporation
5. Describing the collaborative membership
Some visitors will be interested in who funds, designs, and produces the report. Some sources are more trusted than others. Having an "About Us" section showing multistakeholder input may help establish credibility. Below are three examples.
The About Us page on the Maine Health Management Coalition (MHMC) site below includes a comprehensive list of "the employers, doctors, health plans, and hospitals who are members of MHMC."
Tool: Maine Doctor Ratings, Maine Hospital Ratings, Major Surgery Ratings
Sponsor: Maine Health Management Coalition (MHMC)
This "About" page allows the user to find out about the membership, activities, and goals of the organization.
Tool: Performance & Progress Report
Sponsor: The Wisconsin Collaborative for Healthcare Quality
This page provides clearly categorized links to each stakeholder organization. The Board of Directors page provides additional details on represented organizations.
Tool: Virginia Health Information: From Numbers to Knowledge
Sponsor: Virginia Health Information (VHI)
6. Explaining rules concerning use of information by other organizations
Some collaboratives have developed "Rules of Use" for other organizations that may be interested in using some or all of the information. For example, others may be interested in using the data for other public reports, provider advertisements, or provider negotiations. Rules of Use statements may include restrictions about the business use of the data, changes in how the data are presented, ways to cite the data, and steps to get approval of use of a collaborative's data or logo.
The following three examples illustrate Rules of Use with varying levels of detail and emphasis.
The following example includes a brief statement on the intended uses of publicly reported data.
Tool: Take Charge for Better Health, Using Information To Get Good Care
Sponsor: Healthy Memphis Common Table
URL: http://www.healthymemphis.org (organization) and http://www.healthymemphis.org/assets/docs/Reports/HMCT%20report%202%20111609R.pdf (document) (PDF File; Plugin Software Help)
The guidelines below provide recommendations for acknowledging data limitations, using publicly reported performance results for marketing, and using results for financial and business purposes. Specific examples of what is and is not appropriate are also provided.
Tool: Partner for Quality Care, Guidelines for Using Performance Results
Sponsor: Oregon Health Care Quality Corp
URL: http://www.partnerforqualitycare.org/index.php (organization) and http://www.partnerforqualitycare.org/pdf/guidelines_performance.pdf (document) (PDF File; Plugin Software Help)
The file available from the Rules of Use includes four pages describing optimal uses of the results; restrictions on use during report development; a guide to interpretation of results; directions for submission for review before use; specific guidelines for citations and logo use; prohibition on composite measures; and insistence that reporting conventions be upheld.
Tool: Community Checkup Report
Sponsor: Puget Sound Health Alliance
URL:http://www.pugetsoundhealthalliance.org/ (organization) and http://www.pugetsoundhealthalliance.org/resources/documents/RulesforUse_2009.pdf (document, PDF File; Plugin Software Help)
7. Providing legal notices and disclaimers
Some collaboratives add a legal disclaimer when allowing users to access data. Most often, such disclaimers state that the collaborative cannot be liable for the accuracy of the data. In some cases, the user is required to go to the disclaimer before accessing provider scores. In other cases, the disclaimer is simply available on the Web site.
The legal disclaimer below can be found by selecting the "Disclaimer" link at the top of the NH QualityCare Web site.
Tool: NH QualityCare
Sponsor: Foundation for Healthy Communities and Northeast Health Care Quality Foundation. NHQualityCare.org is a partnership between the Foundation for Healthy Communities and the Northeast Health Care Quality Foundation.
Tool: What Patients Say About Their Doctors
Sponsor: Consumers' CHECKBOOK/Center for the Study of Services (CHECKBOOK/CSS), in collaboration with the Kansas City Quality Improvement Consortium and health plans
Sponsors: California Hospital Assessment and Reporting Taskforce, the California HealthCare Foundation, and the University of California, San Francisco