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Current Work

What are QIOs currently doing? 

In August 2011, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) marked a bold, new direction in improving health care services to Medicare beneficiaries by launching a series of projects that will take place within the Quality Improvement Organization (QIO) Program between now and July 2014. The new set of projects serves as one more tool in the fight against poor, uncoordinated, and unsafe care in America’s nursing homes, physician offices, hospitals, and other care settings.

How do QIOs improve health delivery, status, and cost? 

The QIO program focuses on three aims: better patient care, better population health, and lower health care costs through improvement. As part of this effort, QIOs contribute to bold, national goals, like a 40-percent reduction in hospital-acquired conditions. Through large-scale learning networks, QIOs accelerate the pace of change and rapidly spread best practices. Improvement initiatives encourage innovation, respond to community needs, and lead the way to patient-centered care by including an active role for Medicare beneficiaries.

QIOs work to reconfigure health care processes to make them safer and more patient-centered. They focus specifically on:

  • Reviewing beneficiary complaints, as well as advocating beneficiaries and their families to be meaningfully involved in QIO improvement and prevention activities, not just with complaints and appeals;
  • Using evidence-based change packages and other improvement tools in partnership with CMS and the Patient Safety and Clinical Pharmacy Services Collaborative from the Health Resources & Services Administration to improve patient safety and health outcomes;
  • Working with nursing homes to reduce pressure ulcers;
  • Reducing central-line bloodstream infections;
  • Boosting population health by improving use of electronic health records for care management to increase preventive services like flu and pneumococcal immunizations, and colorectal and breast cancer screenings; and
  • Helping to reduce readmissions within 30 days of discharge by 20 percent over three years by changing processes of care at community levels, including hospitals, home health agencies, dialysis facilities, nursing homes, and physician offices.

Details about each of these projects is available in the “Fact Sheets” posted in the Downloads section, below.

Operational Updates from CMS

List of Communities for 10th Statement of Work's Integrated Care for Populations & Communities Aim (4-21-11) 

On April 21, 2011, CMS issued a list of communities in order to assist QIO bidders in responding to this Aim's requirements in their proposals. A ZIP file, with Word documents organized by state/territory, is included in the "Downloads" section, below.

Request for Proposals for QIO Program 10th Statement of Work (4-18-11) 

On April 18, 2011, CMS issued a request for proposals solicitation to potential bidders for the QIO 10th Statement of Work contract on the FedBizOpps.gov website. CMS accepted questions from potential bidders through Friday, April 29, 2011. A link for more information is included in "Related Links," below.

10th SOW Town Hall Meeting (3-28-11) 

On March 28, 2011, CMS hosted a Town Hall meeting to share details about the emerging vision and plan for the 10th Statement of Work, including articulation of the goals CMS is aiming to achieve in the SOW as well as ideas that all stakeholders can adopt to approach our work in new, innovative ways. The slide presentation includes a brief overview of 10th SOW topic areas, as well as key information about QIO Program administration of interest to potential bidders. A copy of the slide presentation from this meeting is included in the "Downloads" section, below.

First Public Draft of QIO Program 10th Statement of Work (2-25-11) 

On February 25, 2011, CMS issued a draft version of the QIO 10th Statement of Work contract on the FedBizOpps.gov website. CMS accepted industry comments/questions on the draft Statement of Work through Tuesday, March 15, 2011. A link for more information is included in "Related Links," below.