The Quality and Performance Measures Committee oversees the quality measure portfolio for SVS. Members develop, test, and submit quality measures for national endorsement. It begins with measure concepts, builds on those concepts by using data from registries, tests the concepts, and then submits them to the National Quality Forum for endorsement, a process which can take up to a year. Also, measures are submitted to the Physician Quality Reporting System through the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
The committee tracks national trends in quality, represents SVS at quality-related organizations such as the Surgical Quality Alliance and the American Medical Association’s Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement, and works closely with federal agencies including CMS, AHRQ, the NIH and AQA on a variety of national quality initiatives.
There are three new nationally endorsed quality measures, with two additional measures pending endorsement. The new measures include:
• Statin Therapy at Discharge after Lower Extremity Bypass
• Postoperative Stroke or Death in Asymptomatic Patients Undergoing Carotid Endarterectomy
• Postoperative Stroke or Death in Asymptomatic Patients Undergoing Carotid Artery Stenting
• In-Hospital Mortality following Elective Open Repair of AAAs (pending)
• In-Hospital Mortality following Elective EVAR of AAAs (pending)
In response to the recently endorsed measures, Quality and Performance Measures Committee Chair Dr. Timothy Kresowik stated, “In the current era of public reporting and pay for performance, it is essential that SVS continue to develop and promote clinically valid performance measures, especially in the areas of outcomes and cost. If we don’t stay out in front, we will be saddled with measures developed by those who do not fully understand the complexities of what we do, potentially resulting in not only a financial harm to us, but more importantly a decline in quality of care for patients with vascular disease.”
Building a strong quality portfolio, along with maintaining that portfolio, is an often labor-intensive process, but vital to the future of SVS as a leader in the quality arena. Thanks to the talent of SVS members and those who serve on the Quality and Performance Measures Committee, SVS continues to be a leader in the area of health care quality.