NQF board endorses patient safety measures

The National Quality Forum (NQF) board of directors has endorsed 14 patient safety measures with a focus on complications. The measures address a range of quality concerns, including surgical safety, medication safety, venous thromboembolism, and care coordination.

"Preventable errors in healthcare are costing Americans in a number of ways, whether in premiums, lost work time and wages, or undue stress and anxiety for patients and families," said William A. Conway, MD, senior vice president and chief quality officer at Henry Ford Health System in Detroit and co-chair of the Patient Safety — Complications Steering Committee. "This measure set will ensure the healthcare community has the right measurement tools to help alleviate these burdens and provide patients with high-quality care."

Endorsed measures are:

  • 0267: Wrong Site, Wrong Side, Wrong Patient, Wrong Procedure, Wrong Implant (Ambulatory Surgical Center Quality Collaboration);
  • 0344: Accidental Puncture or Laceration Rate (PDI 1) (Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, AHRQ)
  • 0345: Accidental Puncture or Laceration Rate (PSI 15) (AHRQ);
  • 0362: Foreign Body left after procedure (PDI 3) (AHRQ);
  • 0363: Foreign Body Left During Procedure (PSI 5) (AHRQ) ;
  • 0263: Patient Burn (Ambulatory Surgical Center Quality Collaboration) ;
  • 0022: Use of High Risk Medications in the Elderly (National Committee for Quality Assurance);
  • 0372: Intensive Care Unit Venous Thromboembolism Prophylaxis (The Joint Commission);
  • 0373: Venous Thromboembolism Patients with Anticoagulant Overlap Therapy (The Joint Commission);
  • 0450: Postoperative Pulmonary Embolism or Deep Vein Thrombosis Rate (PSI 12) (AHRQ);
  • 0346: Iatrogenic Pneumothorax Rate (PSI 6) (AHRQ);
  • 0348: Iatrogenic Pneumothorax Rate (PDI 5) (AHRQ);
  • 0349: Transfusion Reaction (PSI 16) (AHRQ) (reserve status);
  • 0350: Transfusion Reaction (PDI 13) (AHRQ) (reserve status).

The measures include only those that have been endorsed for at least three years and are now undergoing NQF endorsement maintenance. The ongoing evaluation and updating of endorsed measures ensures they are current and relevant to NQF's patient safety portfolio. In all, 27 measures were evaluated against NQF's endorsement criteria, with 14 receiving endorsement status. Three measures still are under consideration.

Pamela Cipriano, PhD, RN, senior director at Galloway Consulting and co-chair of the Patient Safety Measures steering committee, said, "These measures are an important part of the NQF measure portfolio. They help providers examine adverse events and increase accountability to implement improvements that will protect patients and enable the safe, high-quality, and compassionate care they deserve."

NQF is a voluntary consensus standards-setting organization.