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Med Care. 2005 Mar;43(3 Suppl):I64-71.

NHQR/NHDR measures for women of reproductive age.

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  • 1Center for Outcomes and Evidence, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, US Department of Health and Human Services, Rockville, MD 20850, USA. BCSHARP@AHRQ.GOV



This article addresses measures of importance to women of reproductive age in the first National Healthcare Quality Report (NHQR) and National Healthcare Disparities Report (NHDR).


The authors review each of the 4 components of quality of care: effectiveness, safety, timeliness, and patient centeredness. The effectiveness component topics with relevance to women of childbearing age include breast cancer, cervical cancer, HIV, AIDS, mental health, and maternity care. The safety component includes 3 relevant measures of obstetric trauma. The quality aspects of timeliness of care and patient centeredness will be discussed in terms of women, although the NHQR and NHDR did not include them as a separate topic because the data were so limited regarding women.


There is a foundation of knowledge about many aspects of quality health care for women of reproductive age. However, gaps are evident in some measures, usually due to insufficient data.


Further development of the measure set would benefit from additional process and outcome variables that can link screening, diagnosis, and treatment with health outcomes. Such linkages will expand our knowledge and capability to improve health outcomes for women of reproductive age.

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