Core measures for psych inpatients being tested

New core performance measures have been identified for pilot testing by the Joint Commission, for care of inpatient hospital-based psychiatric patients. The five measures being tested address assessment of potential risks, previous trauma, co-existence of substance abuse, restraint use, seclusion use, patients discharge on multiple antipsychotic medications, and provision of discharge assessment and aftercare recommendations to responsible community health providers upon discharge. The final measure set will be submitted to the National Quality Forum for consideration and endorsement. It is expected that the finalized set of measures will become available in the fall of 2008.

"The impetus behind the initiative was demand from the field," says Celeste Milton, the Joint Commission's associate project director of hospital-based inpatient psychiatric services.

Organizations were asking for a system to compare their performance data on a national level with others in the field, she explains. "The feedback we receive from the field will help us to finalize the performance measure set," says Milton.