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Health-care Quality Initiatives

January 1, 1998
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Related Topics: Benefit Design and Communication, Health and Wellness, Featured Article
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The following is a list of companies and organizations that can help you in your quest for quality. Many of them have comprehensive Web sites that will provide you with the information you need to define, measure and improve value over time.

National Committee on Quality Assurance (NCQA)
2000 L St. NW
Washington, D.C. 20036
Phone: 202/955-3500
Fax: 202/955-3599
Internet:
www.ncqa.org

NCQA is a private not-for-profit organization dedicated to assessing and reporting on the quality of managed-care plans. Visit the NCQA Web site to read the latest press releases related to quality and browse the Accreditation Summary Reports (ASRs) to find out which plans have earned the NCQA seal of approval.

NCQA also is responsible for creating HEDIS (Health Plan Employer Data Information Set)—a set of performance measures for assessing health plan performance. NCQA releases HEDIS data to the public in the form a CD-ROM product called Quality Compass.

Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Health Care (JCAHO)
One Renaissance Blvd.
Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181
Phone: 630/792-5000
Fax: 630/792-5005
Internet:
www.jcaho.org

JCAHO recently launched an initiative called ORYX to integrate performance measures into the accreditation process of the health-care organizations it reviews. While its primary focus continues to be accrediting hospitals, the organization recently launched an accreditation program to evaluate preferred provider organization (PPO) networks.

Foundation for Accountability (FAACT)
520 SW 6 Ave. Suite 700
Portland, OR 97204
Phone: 503/223-2228
Fax: 503/223-4336

FAACT began as a not-for-profit consortium of private-sector purchasers, government organizations, and consumer advocacy organizations. Its mission is to create state-of-the-art quality measurement sets and conduct research on what consumers want and need in the way of quality information.

National Business Coalition on Health (NBCH)
1015 18th St. NW, Suite 450
Washington, D.C. 20036
Phone: 202/775-9300
Fax: 202/775-1569
Internet:
www.ncbh.org/nbch

NBCH represents more than 100 employer coalitions across the country representing over 8,000 employers and more than 35 million employees and dependents. NBCH is dedicated to helping coalition members achieve meaningful change in local health-care markets.

President’s Advisory Commission on Consumer Protection and Quality in the Health Care Industry
Hubert H. Humphrey Building
200 Independence Ave. SW Suite 118F
Washington, D.C. 20201
Phone: 202/205-3038
Internet:
www.hcqualitycommission.gov

The commission was created by President Bill Clinton to "advise the president on changes occurring in the health-care system and recommend such measures as may be necessary to promote and assure health-care quality and value, and protect consumers and workers in the health-care system." The commission comprises health-care industry experts, employer coalition representatives and consumer advocates. Visit the Web site and gain access to the minutes and proceedings of all of the meetings to date and find out when the public hearings may be in your area.

Workforce, January 1998, Vol. 77, No. 1, p. 94.

Recent Articles by Mark R. Bard

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