Building the Science of Public Reporting

Research Grants

For public reporting to be effective, reports need to provide consumers with transparent, timely information they can trust to help inform their conversations with providers and payers and help guide their health care decisions. The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) are supporting 17 exploratory and developmental studies that will inform the content, design, dissemination, and underlying data and methodology of public reports.

Current research indicates that consumers' infrequent use of public reports of health care quality and resource use is due to reports' poor design, irrelevant content, and inadequate dissemination, rather than a lack of interest in the information. Research also indicates that consumers want easy-to-understand, readily accessible reports that allow them to compare providers and sites of care based on quality and value at key decision points. For public reporting to be effective, reports need to provide consumers with transparent, timely information they can trust to help inform their conversations with providers and payers and help guide their health care decisions.

AHRQ, in collaboration with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), is supporting the following 17 exploratory and developmental studies that will inform the content, design, dissemination, and underlying data and methodology of public reports. To facilitate rapid use of findings to improve public reports, AHRQ will be forming a working group of Federal agencies involved in public reporting, and will also be working with State and community stakeholders to disseminate evidence. In addition, a number of grantees are partnering with AHRQ's Chartered Value Exchange community quality collaboratives and other public reporting organizations so that their research can provide direct feedback on how to create more effective reports for consumers.

To learn more about any of these grants, please contact Brent Sandmeyer at brent.sandmeyer@ahrq.hhs.gov.

1. Evaluating the Impact of Patient-Centric Home Health Quality Reports
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021879
Investigator: Baier, Rosa
Institution: Healthcentric Advisors
Description: This study will assess home health consumers' and advocates' use of current home health quality reports and their preferences for improvements, create a model report based on those preferences, and test whether patients with congestive heart failure who are offered the new reports prior to discharge choose higher quality home health agencies and are more satisfied with their choice.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

2. Engaging Patients and Hospitals To Expand Public Reporting in Surgery
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021857
Investigator: Bilimoria, Karl
Institution: Northwestern University
Description: This study will assess the new pilot CMS-American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (NSQIP) Hospital Compare report of surgical quality, create a personalized risk report for consumers based on the NSQIP Surgical Risk Calculator, and compare the two.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

3. Assessing the Effects of an Intervention To Increase Relevancy and Use of Public Reports
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021873
Investigator: Carman, Kristin
Institution: American Institutes for Research
Description: This study will assess pregnant women's preferences for quality information; develop a novel report and test it with a real-world randomized controlled trial, evaluating clinical, cost, and self-reported outcomes.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

4. Improving Nursing Home Compare To Meet the Needs of Minority Populations
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021891
Investigator: Gaudet, Jennifer
Institution: Brandeis University
Description: This study will assess minority elders' and caregivers' preferences for Nursing Home Compare (NHC); stratify existing NHC and related disparity measures by population group and determine statistical validity and feasibility of such stratification; and assess minority elders' view of valid stratified measures.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

5. IDEAS for a Healthy Baby: Reducing Disparities in Consumer Use of Quality Data
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021864
Investigator: Goff, Sarah
Institution: Baystate Medical Center
Description: This study will randomly assign low-income pregnant women to receive a patient navigator's help in using public reports to select a pediatric provider and will assess the impact on choice of quality practices and patient activation.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

6. Building the Science of Public Reporting—Activating Consumer Interest
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021868
Investigator: Huesch, Marco
Institution: University of Southern California
Description: This study will examine the discussion of health care quality around maternity care (specifically cesarean sections) via social media and networks. The investigators will then develop and test a social media intervention strategy to increase consumer use of public reports.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2014

7. Improving Nursing Home Compare for Dually Eligible Consumers
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021871
Institution: University of Chicago
Investigator: Konetzka, Rita Tamara
Description: This study will assess whether people eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid have benefited under NHC and then will determine barriers to dually eligible consumers' use of NHC and ability to choose different nursing homes.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

8. Engaging Vulnerable Consumers in Developing Useful Public Health Care Reports
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021902
Investigator: Longo, Daniel
Institution: Virginia Commonwealth University
Description: This study assesses the preferences of minority diabetic consumers for public report content, design, and dissemination, and explores how reports can be redesigned to best reflect those preferences.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

9. Engaging Parents With Low Health Literacy in Designing Hospital Public Reports
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021898
Investigator: Merrill, Chaya
Institution: Children's Research Institute
Description: This study will evaluate the health care information needs of low-income parents of children with special health care needs and will develop and test hospital measures reflecting those preferences.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

10. Patient-Centered Quality Reporting
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021844
Investigator: Mukamel, Dana
Institution: University of California, Irvine
Description: This study will develop a Web-based e-coaching decision aid to serve as a user-friendly NHC interface and then will pilot test it among consumers to determine its potential impact on decisionmaking.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

11. Innovations in the Science of Public Reporting of Provider Performance
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021860
Investigator: Paddock, Susan
Institution: RAND Corporation
Description: This study will assess the risk of misclassifying physicians into performance tiers, examine the extent to which specific types of displays more accurately reflect performance differences, and develop a joint cost-quality modeling framework that would better distinguish performance at a smaller unit of analysis.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

12. Eliciting Patient Experiences To Augment Public Reports on Health Care Quality
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021858
Investigator: Schlesinger, Mark
Institution: Yale University
Description: This study will test methods and validity of eliciting consumer narratives of care experiences, compare these methods with CAHPS, test methods for including narratives in public reports, evaluate the impact of including narratives on consumer behavior; and assess real-world implementation opportunities.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

13. Hospital Quality Reports for Expectant Mothers: Considering Race and Language
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021903
Investigator: Sentell, Tetine
Institution: University of Hawaii at Manoa
Description: This study will examine inpatient maternal health quality disparities among Asian American and Pacific Islander (AA/PI) populations in Hawaii with limited English proficiency (LEP), assess use of and preferences for public reports about recent AA/PI and LEP mothers, and design and pilot test a personalized, interactive Web site prototype focused on maternal health quality.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

14. Improving the Framework for Health Care Public Reporting
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021854
Investigator: Silber, Jeffrey
Institution: Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
Description: This study will develop a new measurement model and accompanying display that will better distinguish hospital mortality differences, develop a fully probabilistic predictive model of hospital outcomes, and develop an evaluation framework for public reporting measurement models.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

15. Improving Diabetes Quality Reports for Persons With Multiple Chronic Conditions
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021899
Investigator: Smith, Maureen
Institution: University of Wisconsin Madison
Description: This study will determine the prevalence of clusters of similar multiple chronic conditions, assess whether diabetes metrics can meet sample size requirements after stratifying by cluster, explore the extent of care fragmentation for diabetics, and obtain consumer feedback on the usefulness of such measures.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

16. Designing and Testing a Report Card on Hospice Performance
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021870
Investigator: Smith, Paul Bradley
Institution: Altarum Institute
Description: This study will assess Medicare beneficiaries' preferences for hospice quality information and will test variations of a model report card that may be personalized or include educational materials, to determine impact on satisfaction and confidence in choices.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2013

17. Improving Consumer Response to Nursing Home Quality Information
Grant Number: 1 R21 HS021861
Investigator: Werner, Rachel
Institution: University of Pennsylvania
Description: This study will evaluate the effect of composite versus individual quality measures on nursing home choice as well as sorting/matching of patients and will assess how consumers interpret composite versus individual ratings.
Period: 9/2012 - 9/2015

Current as of October 2012
Internet Citation: Building the Science of Public Reporting: Research Grants. October 2012. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/professionals/quality-patient-safety/quality-resources/tools/sciencepubreport/index.html