Coalition to push quality, affordability

April 10, 2009

Stand for Quality, a public-private coalition, has developed a quality-improvement and affordability framework.

More than 165 healthcare organizations-organizations that don’t always see eye-to-eye on national issues-have developed a quality-improvement and affordability framework through a new coalition.

Stand for Quality, the public-private coalition, is led by 15 organizations, including America’s Health Insurance Plans, the American Hospital Assn., the American Medical Assn., the Federation of American Hospitals and the National Quality Forum.

Their call to action is clear, according to Richard Stefanacci, DO, strategist, public policy, Access Communications LLC, a full-service managed markets consulting agency.

“Healthcare reform must support better access and affordable care while also allowing for improved quality assessment and ongoing improvement,” says Stefanacci, who also serves as founding executive director, Health Policy Institute, University of the Sciences in Philadelphia. “Only through collective efforts across public and private sectors will we create a patient-centered system that offers efficient, high quality and financially sustainable care for all.”

The formation of Stand for Quality and its quality-improvement framework proposal is a call to the new administration and Congress that key stakeholders in healthcare are willing to roll up their sleeves, says Andrea Troy, senior vice president, Access Communications.

“With the economy in crisis and healthcare costs increasing faster than incomes, a rapidly growing number of Americans are losing access to care and coverage,” Troy says. “At the same time, the public and private healthcare systems in the United States do not consistently deliver the healthcare quality or health outcomes commensurate with the level of available resources and evidence-based medical science.”

Stand for Quality recommends:
• Set national priorities;
• Endorse and maintain nationally standardized measures;
• Develop new quality measures to fill gaps in priority areas;
• Ensure that providers and other stakeholders have a role in developing policies on use of measures;
• Collect, analyze, and make performance information available for improvement; and
• Support a sustainable infrastructure for quality improvement.