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Jt Comm J Qual Improv. 1999 May;25(5):239-51.

Using a quality scorecard to measure and improve medical groups' performance.

Author information

  • 1Blue Cross of California, Woodland Hills 91367, USA. michael.belman@wellpoint.com

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Blue Cross of California (BCC) uses an annual Quality Scorecard to measure performance of participating medical groups (PMGs) and independent practice associations (IPAs). The scorecard provides information to the PMGs/IPAs on their performance in several domains relative to the average network score. BCC pays annual bonuses to PMGs/IPAs with superior quality performance. A structured intervention was designed to improve the performance of PMGs/IPAs that performed poorly on the scorecard.

METHODS:

A cohort study was conducted in a large health maintenance organization in California in 1997. All PMGs/IPAs received a detailed summary of the components of the annual quality scorecard. Scorecard components include an annual audit of quality, utilization management, credentialing, and members' rights and responsibilities, grievance rates, member transfer for quality reasons, a satisfaction survey, and a preventive health review. Twenty-two of 124 PMGs/IPAs with more than 1,000 BCC members during 1996 that had scored lower than 1 standard deviation below the mean were targeted. These 22 outlier PMGs/IPAs received additional information indicating that their performance was below average. A BCC quality team subsequently visited the outlier PMGs/IPAs to provide supplementary information on the deficient areas and provide assistance in making improvements.

RESULTS:

The outlier groups showed significant improvements in the annual audit of quality score, member satisfaction with access, member satisfaction with last visit, overall member satisfaction with PMGs/IPAs, mammography screening, and the total score.

CONCLUSIONS:

A structured quality improvement intervention in poorly performing PMGs/IPAs was followed by improvements in specific performance measures.

PMID:
10340208
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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