AHRQ Report Informs Leapfrog Group Hospital Quality Survey
The Leapfrog Group announced its fourth "leap" forward in the safety, quality, and affordability of health care in April 2004. In response to hospitals' requests to receive credit and recognition for their health care quality activities beyond the initial three leaps, Leapfrog devised this new leap, in the form of a survey, as an additional measure of hospital quality.
AHRQ's Evidence Report No. 43, Making Health Care Safer: A Critical Analysis of Patient Safety Practices, was used as the basis for the National Quality Forum's (NQF) Safe Practices for Better Healthcare: A Consensus Report. This NQF report, published in May 2003, served as the foundation for the new Leapfrog initiative, and also includes Leapfrog's initial three leaps (computer physician order entry systems, ICU physician staffing, and evidence-based hospital referral). These initiatives are designed to encourage employers to take steps with their employees, retirees, and families by rewarding the hospitals that implement significant improvements in quality and patient safety.
The Leapfrog Group's newest recommendations—the fourth leap—will assess hospitals' progress on the remaining 27 of 30 NQF Safe Practices. After completion of an online Leapfrog hospital survey, each hospital's relative ranking compared with other hospitals will be displayed on the Leapfrog Web site. The results will appear with hospitals' previous results for the initial three patient safety leaps and health care quality.
Leapfrog's initial three leaps or practices were targeted at urban hospitals. With the fourth leap, rural hospitals will be able to submit quality data to Leapfrog for the first time and all hospitals may choose to update their surveys at any time.
The Leapfrog Group was founded in 2000 and is composed of more than 150 public and private organizations that provide health care benefits. Leapfrog works with medical experts throughout the U.S. to identify problems and propose solutions that it believes will improve hospital systems that could break down and harm patients. Representing more than 34 million health care consumers across the United States, Leapfrog provides important information and solutions for consumers and health care providers.
For more information, go to http://www.leapfroggroup.org.
Making Health Care Safer: A Critical Analysis of Patient Safety Practices: Summary. July 2001. AHRQ Publication No. 01-E057. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD. http://www.ahrq.gov/clinic/ptsafety/summary.htm