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NICHQ CEO Serves As Chair Of NCQA Pediatric Performance Measurement Committee

February 2009


NICHQ’s CEO, Charles Homer, MD, MPH, recently served as chair of NCQA’s pediatric performance measurement committee.  “We’re delighted to have Dr. Homer chair our Children’s Measurement Advisory Panel.  His expertise is invaluable as we move forward in developing and testing new measure of comprehensive well care for children,” said Sarah Hudson Scholle, Assistant Vice President for Research at NCQA.
We asked Charlie a few questions on this work:
What’s different about NCQA’s latest measure development in pediatric healthcare?
NCQA has long had measures for children’s health care, especially well child care including visits, immunization rates, lead screening [Medicaid], and Chlamydia screening [for older adolescent  girls].  Other areas measured have included asthma, ADHD, and obesity assessment and management.  The goal of our new effort is to develop a more holistic measurement set that reflects more fully what comprehensive care for children should accomplish.  We aim to get at measures that further reflect effectiveness and also care experience.
How did your committee go about proposing new measures to NCQA?
This measurement effort—which is supported with a grant from and working in partnership with the Commonwealth Fund—started with an expert policy panel that reflected on the current measures and the intended purpose of children’s health care (healthy and ready to learn and ready to work) and worked backwards from there. Moving from concept to practicality, the committee then considered what evidence supported specific processes of care and where they was professional consensus in the absence of evidence.
What about medical homes?
Given the importance and value of medical homes-an area NICHQ is working in aggressively-NCQA has developed standards for general practice, including a tiered certification program for practices.  While the NCQA program has contributed to furthering effective medical homes in general practices, it is not-nor was it intended to be-pediatric centric.  Work is now occurring on pediatric medical home standards, especially focusing on the criticality of being family centered; community based; and attentive to developmental transitions.  NICHQ is excited to be making a difference here.
Beyond your chairing this committee, how else has NICHQ participated in NCQA measurement development?

Our ADHD collaborative informed NCQA measures including medication management.  Results from our various obesity programs informed measures in this area as well.  Currently, tools developed in our medical home collaboratives—including care plans—are being considered as indicators of high quality follow up care for children with special health care needs.

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