Supplemental Items To Support Improvement in Health Plan Quality

To support the QI efforts of health plans, the RAND CAHPS Team conducted a series of interviews with 27 health plans around the country in 2003. The team learned that survey sponsors were pleased with the CAHPS Health Plan Survey’s scientific rigor, comparability, and standardization. However, the plans wanted more actionable information that would allow them to more effectively target and address aspects of their care that need improvement.

Development of Supplemental Items

Having established the need for supplemental items to support quality improvement at the health plan level, the RAND Team conducted a consensus-building process with the plans to identify the four domains of care that were most important to them for quality improvement purposes:

  • Coordination of care
  • Access to care
  • Information and materials
  • Customer service

The Team then proceeded to develop a set of supplemental items covering topics in each of these four domains. The items were tested with three health plans in 2004. The tests found that most of the items performed quite strongly and correlated to the hypothesized domains in the core questionnaire.

To learn more about the development of the QI supplemental items:

Review the Items

The QI items are available for the CAHPS Health Plan Survey as part of the adult and child supplemental item sets:

  • CAHPS Health Plan Survey 4.0: Adult Supplemental Items (PDF [ PDF file - 317.43 KB])
  • CAHPS Health Plan Survey 4.0: Child Supplemental Items (PDF [ PDF file - 256.54 KB])
Page last reviewed March 2018
Page originally created June 2013
Internet Citation: Supplemental Items To Support Improvement in Health Plan Quality. Content last reviewed March 2018. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.
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