Measuring Performance

Cardiovascular Endorsement Maintenance 2010 

Project Status: Completed

Cardiovascular Consensus Standards Endorsement Maintenance

Access the Endorsement Summary (PDF) | Access the Full Report  

The Opportunity 

The human and financial costs of cardiovascular disease are enormous. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States and will cost the United States $316.4 billion in 2010. Hypertension affects 1 in 3 Americans, increasing their risk for heart disease, stroke, or kidney disease and will cost $76.6 billion in healthcare services, medications, and missed days of work.1 Over the past nine years, NQF has endorsed a large number of consensus standards to evaluate the quality of care for cardiovascular conditions in the ambulatory and hospital settings. Evaluating all NQF-endorsed cardiovascular measures and considering new measures will ensure the currency of NQF's portfolio of voluntary consensus standards.

As the quality measurement enterprise has matured, better data from clinical registries and electronic health records can support the demand for meaningful performance measures. There also has been a shift to focus on outcomes and composite measures.

NQF has endorsed consensus standards applicable to cardiovascular conditions in a number of other projects, including Hospital Care-Initial Performance Set 2003; National Voluntary Consensus Standards for Hospital Care: Additional Priority Areas 2005-2006; National Voluntary Consensus Standards for Ambulatory Care, and National Voluntary Consensus Standards for Emergency Care.

NQF Endorsed Cardiovascular Consensus Standards and their Respective Projects (PDF)

About the Project 

The project began in September 2010.

This project seeks to identify and endorse measures for public reporting and quality improvement that specifically address cardiovascular conditions including hypertension, coronary artery disease, acute myocardial infarction, PCI, heart failure, atrial fibrillation, or any other heart disease and any treatments, diagnostic studies, interventions, or procedures associated with these conditions. NQF will solicit measures applicable to any healthcare setting and utilizing any data sources. Measures that are harmonized across settings (e.g., outpatient and hospital) are preferred.

Measures will be solicited for the following topics in two "phases":

Phase 1 coronary artery disease, AMI, PCI, and treatments, diagnostic studies, interventions, or procedures associated with these conditions. 

Phase 2 hypertension, heart failure, atrial fibrillation, and other heart disease and treatments, diagnostic studies, interventions, or procedures associated with these conditions. 

Additionally, as part of this process, cardiovascular consensus standards that were endorsed by NQF before June 2008 will be evaluated under the maintenance process. Endorsement maintenance provides the opportunity to harmonize specifications and to ensure that an endorsed measure represents the "best in class."

NQF Process 

The candidate measures will be considered for NQF endorsement as voluntary consensus standards. Agreement around the recommendations will be developed through NQF's formal Consensus Development Process (CDP). This project will involve the active participation of representatives from across the spectrum of healthcare stakeholders and will be guided by a multiple-stakeholder Cardiovascular Steering Committee.


This project is supported under a contract provided by the Department of Health and Human Services.

For information about the availability of auxiliary aids and services for NQF’s federally funded projects, please visit:


Related NQF Work 

Contact Information 

For more information, contact Reva Winkler, MD, MPH or Ashley Morsell, MPH at 202-783-1300 or via e-mail at


1. Lloyd-Jones D, Adams RJ, Brown TM, et al., Heart disease and stroke statistics—2010 update: a report from the American Heart Association Statistics Committee and Stroke Statistics Subcommittee , Circulation, 2010;121:e1-e170.

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