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AHRQ, CMS Award $13 Million to Test and Implement New Children’s Quality Measures

AHRQ, CMS Award $13 Million to Test and Implement New Children’s Quality Measures

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced today awards totaling $13.4 million in funding over four years to six new Pediatric Quality Measures Program (PQMP) grantees focused on implementing new pediatric quality measures developed by the PQMP Centers of Excellence (COE).

Quality measures are used to evaluate or quantify specific health care processes, outcomes, patient perceptions, or other factors related to health care delivery. The pediatric quality measures are used by State Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Programs (CHIP) and other public and private programs, providers, plans, patients, and their families to measure and improve the quality of children’s health care.        

The PQMP was initially established in 2011 by AHRQ and CMS under Title IV of the Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act (CHIPRA) with the aim of increasing the portfolio of evidence-based, consensus pediatric quality measures available to public and private purchasers of children’s health care services. The initial phase of the PQMP funded seven COEs to develop new and innovative pediatric measures. This next phase of work will implement and test these newly developed pediatric measures in real-world settings to learn more about how they work when used in the front lines of care.

The new grantees will have two key goals focused on assessing the feasibility and usability of the new measures within the Medicaid and CHIP patient populations at the State, health plan, and provider levels to support performance monitoring and quality improvement.

“The PQMP Centers of Excellence provided us with valid measures of children’s health care quality. This next step of research will help us test these measures in real-world settings,” said AHRQ Director Andy Bindman, M.D. “The ultimate goal is to improve children’s health through better health care, at lower costs, at both the Federal and State level.”

“Medicaid and CHIP give millions of children in the United States a healthy start. Through efforts such as this Pediatric Quality Measures Program funding, we are able to advance States’ efforts to measure and report meaningful improvements in the quality of care for children,” said Vikki Wachino, Director, Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services (CMCS).

This new effort is funded through the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA), (Public Law 114-10 Section 304(b)), which provided continued funding for the Pediatric Quality Measure Program to build knowledge and evidence to support performance monitoring and quality improvement for children in Medicaid and CHIP.

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