Quality measures are important in the healthcare industry. This is why there are Health Quality Measures that measure the top outcomes in order to maintain a system of quality for the ultimate benefit of the entire population. The long-term goal of healthcare organizations is to improve overall population health. SO n addition to treating sick patients, taking care or the old, delivering babies, etc, healthcare organizations seek to improve the quality of health of every individual. This is why you have hospital research activities, testings, the inventions of new medications and drugs, and the constant encouragement of patients to be more engaged in their health. When the overall population health is achieved, then the ultimate goal would have been met.
Health Quality Measures and Patient Engagement
Patient engagement plays a big role in the overall quality of health of an individual. When a patient is engaged not only in the care they receive but also in the overall quality of their health, it can lead to the prevention of several health issues. These days patient engagement is easier than ever with the inventions of technology, patients can track their health with things such as heart rate monitors, pedometers etc, while also communicating it in real-time into a database. Technology also aids easier communication between patients and healthcare providers. Patients can log into the online platforms for hospitals and print out prescriptions for example.
Health Quality Measures and Outcome Measures
The outcome measure is tools used to diagnose and measure performance in the healthcare industry. Outcome measures are valuable tools to healthcare professionals because they help speed up and make more efficient the process of quality improvement.
If you are a healthcare professional, outcome measures may be used to assist in your clinical practice. You must evaluate the appropriateness of the following outcome measures based on the individual’s needs and your own professional expertise. Measures are classified according to their primary focus, are non-exhaustive and you should adhere to relevant copyright guidelines.
Outcome measures play a role in maintaining the health and well being of workers in an organization. For example, in a manufacturing plant or a factory, Outcome measure rules state that psychology, acupuncture, chiropractic, osteopathy, physiotherapy and remedial massage providers who provide services to injured workers for longer than 4-6 weeks will use standardized or customized outcome measures to assist in the clinical justification of their services.
Outcome measures reduce administrative time for treating healthcare professionals by providing the following benefits:
- The questionnaires can be completed by the injured worker or TAC client independently of the treating healthcare professional
- Instead of the treater having to ask a number of questions as part of their subjective assessment, they can scan the questionnaires to pick out the most important issues
- Assessment of the outcome of treatment is determined more rapidly and with greater objectivity using standardized measures
- Outcome measures abbreviate information that is required by external parties including referring healthcare professionals and WorkSafe Agents
- Subsequent reports are also abbreviated by simply referring to the scores over time and how they have varied
- Selecting and interpreting outcome measures
So we talked about how patients can be engaged in their care. Well, a part of this is that it leads to self-reported outcomes since patients can notify care providers of progress in their health or any outcomes that result from the treatment they receive. What’s the difference between performance-based outcome measures and self-reported ones?
The book Physical Therapy Documentation: From Examination to Outcome defines a performance-based outcome measurement tool as one in which “the patient is required to perform a set of functional tasks, such as the FIM [Functional Independence Measure],” which assesses the patient’s “ability to perform self-care skills (e.g., feeding and dressing), control bowel/bladder function, transfer, move (e.g., gait and stair climbing), 5. communicate, and interact socially, including memory and problem solving.”
By contrast, self-reported measures are those that require the patient to complete a questionnaire, “rating his or her overall performance on a predetermined set of functional tasks. There are also reported measure that is not as formal. Such as health apps on your phone that track your daily exercise or calorie intake. This information is stored and can be used to better inform your physician on your health.
The difference between these two measure types reveals a distinction between patient/client perceived or self-measured ability to perform a task or activity and the clinically or professionally measured performance of a task or activity. In other words, self-reported measures convey what a patient believes he or she is capable of accomplishing, whereas a performance-based outcome measure conveys the actual clinical findings.
While some measures clearly are only appropriate for self-reporting (e.g., patient satisfaction surveys), tools tend to be most impactful when they include elements of both measure types as a self-reported or performance-based hybrid, if you will. Now, you might be wondering: if self-reported measures are less-than-accurate representations of a patient’s actual abilities, why use them at all? Why not go performance-based all the way? The answer is simple: accuracy is not the only goal here. In order to treat people, you must have the whole picture. And that includes each individual’s self-perceptions and feelings about his or her progress clinically accurate or not.