Effective Communication and Care Coordination 


The U.S. healthcare system is fragmented, with patients, families, and caregivers forced to navigate an increasingly complex system filled with inefficiencies. Lack of care coordination leads to serious complications, including medication errors, preventable hospital readmissions, and unnecessary pain and suffering for patients. Higher costs are also a concern; the Institute of Medicine has estimated that care coordination efforts could result in $240 billion in annual healthcare savings.

The National Quality Strategy aims to promote effective communication and coordination of care across the healthcare system by focusing on three goals:

  1. Improve the quality of care transitions and communications across care settings.
  2. Improve the quality of life for patients with chronic illness and disability by following a current care plan that anticipates and addresses pain and symptom management, psychosocial needs, and functional status.
  3. Establish shared accountability and integration of communities and healthcare systems to improve quality of care and reduce health disparities.

Related NQF Work

  • NEW! Care Coordination Measures
    NQF will review performance measures in the care coordination domain including measures focused on patient experience of care, health information technology (IT), transitions of care and structural measures.
     
  • Prioritizing Measures: Care Coordination
    Care Coordination focuses on the dynamics of coordination and team-based care between providers of primary care and community-based services in the context of the “health neighborhood”. This project is one of five Prioritizing Measures initiatives.
     
  • Regionalized Emergency Medical Care Services (REMCS) Measure Topic Prioritization
    Building on prior work done in Phase 1 of the Regionalized Emergency Medical Care Services (REMCS) project to endorse a framework for REMCS and to assess current REMCS measures, this project seeks to provide guidance for measure development to ASPR’s prioritized areas of ED crowding, including a specific focus on boarding and diversion, emergency preparedness, and surge capacity.
    Read the Report
     
  • Care Coordination Measures Project
    In August 2012, NQF endorsed 12 measures that assess coordination of care, an essential component in efforts to improve care quality and safety. The measures touch on care concerns such as reconciling patients’ medications, establishing advance care plans, and ensuring medical transition records are given to patients when discharged from hospitals and other in-patient facilities.
    Press Release | Endorsement Summary
     
  • Critical Paths For Creating Data Platforms: Care Coordination Project
    This project assessed the readiness of electronic data and health IT systems to support data capture, normalization, and standardization to support care coordination reporting and evaluation across clinical information systems, such as electronic health records and health information exchanges. The final report was completed in November 2012.
     
  • Measure Applications Partnership (MAP)
    MAP has submitted a number of reports to the Department of Health and Human Services outlining strategies to help improve care through the selection of performance measures for public reporting and performance-based payment programs. Recent reports highlight the unique needs of dual-eligible patients, hospice and palliative care patients, and PPS-Exempt Cancer Hospitals, including the importance of care coordination and patient and family engagement.
     
  • MAP Families of Measures: Safety and Care Coordination Task Force
    This task force will develop a "family" of aligned measures that includes available measures and measure gaps that span programs, care settings, and levels of analysis related to patient safety and care coordination. This family of measures will address cost of care as related to these topics.
     
  • Multiple Chronic Conditions Measurement Framework
    In May 2012, NQF endorsed a measurement framework for individuals with multiple chronic conditions. The framework addresses the complex circumstances of these individuals, and is intended to serve as a guide for future measure development and NQF-endorsement decisions pertaining to measures that address this vulnerable population.
    Press Release | Endorsement Summary
     
  • Regionalized Emergency Medical Care Measurement Framework
    In January 2012, NQF endorsed a framework for measuring and evaluating regionalized emergency medical care systems. The framework establishes a road map for systematically regionalizing emergency care services at the national, state, and regional level.
    Press Release | Endorsement Summary
     

NQF Resources

The Field Guide is an online resource designed to help you easily access NQF resources.   

Find Measures

Use NQF's Quality Positioning System (QPS) to find measures related to Affordable Care.

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