[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 37 (Friday, February 24, 2012)]
[Notices]
[Pages 11119-11120]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-4267]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality


Request for Nominations of Children's Healthcare Quality Measures 
for Potential Inclusion in the CHIPRA 2013 Improved Core Set of Health 
Care Quality Measures for Medicaid/CHIP

AGENCY: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), HHS.

ACTION: Notice of Request for measures.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: Section 401(a) of the Children's Health Insurance Program 
Reauthorization Act of 2009 (CHIPRA), Public Law 111-3, amended the 
Social Security Act to enact section 1139A (42 U.S.C.1320b-9a). Section 
1139A(b) charged the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) with 
improving pediatric health care quality measures. The Agency for 
Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) is soliciting the submission of 
measures of children's healthcare quality for potential inclusion in 
the CHIPRA 2013 Improved Core Set of Health Care Quality Measures (the 
``Improved Core Set'') for potential voluntary use by Medicaid and the 
Children's Health Insurance Program. In addition, CHIPRA established 
the Pediatric Quality Measures Program to increase the portfolio of 
measures available to public and private purchasers of children's 
health care services, providers, and consumers. HHS anticipates that 
measures ultimately included in the Improved Core Set will also be used 
by public and private purchasers to measure pediatric healthcare 
quality. AHRQ is interested in information about the importance, 
scientific validity, and feasibility of the measures. If a measure is 
selected for inclusion, more information, including a copyright release 
(if applicable) and full measure specifications would be needed.

DATES: Please submit materials within 60 days of publication of this 
notice.

ADDRESSES: Electronic submissions are encouraged, preferably as an 
email with one or more electronic files in a standard word processing 
format as an email attachment. Submissions may also be in the form of a 
letter to: Denise Dougherty, Ph.D., Senior Advisor, Child Health and 
Quality Improvement, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, 540 
Gaither Rd, Rockville, MD 20850, Phone: 301-427-1868, Fax: 301-427-
1562, Email: denise.DOUGHERTY@AHRQ.hhs.gov.
    It would be most helpful to the Agency if commenters would include 
the following information in their response: measure characteristics: 
measure name; measure description; denominator statement (if 
applicable); numerator statement (if applicable); data sources and 
exclusions; applicable proprietary rights (e.g., patent or data 
rights); any confidentiality or trade secret protections; whether the 
measure is part of a measure hierarchy (e.g., a collection of measures, 
a measure set, a measure subset as defined at http://www.QUALITYMEASURES.AHRQ.gov/about/hierarchy.aspx); detailed measure 
specifications; importance of the measure; settings, services, measure 
domains, and populations addressed by the measure; evidence for focus 
of the measure; scientific soundness of the measure; results of any 
efforts to demonstrate the capacity of the measure to produce results 
that stratify by race/ethnicity, socioeconomic status, special health 
care need, and/or rurality/urbanicity; feasibility of the measure 
(e.g., availability of data in existing data systems); levels at which 
the measure can be aggregated (e.g., State, health plan, provider); 
understandability to consumers and providers; health information 
technology readiness and sensitivity (e.g., whether the measure has 
been tested in an electronic health record or other health information 
technology); followup contact information.
    AHRQ would also be interested in a summary rationale for why the 
measure should be included in the 2013 Improved Core Set, taking into 
account a balance among desirable attributes of the measure. For 
example, you may be want to describe advantages that this measure has 
over alternative measures that were considered by the measure developer 
or advantages that this measure has over existing measures.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Denise Dougherty, Ph.D., Senior 
Advisor, Child Health and Quality Improvement, Agency for Healthcare 
Research and Quality, 540 Gaither Rd, Rockville, MD 20850, Phone: 301-
427-1868, Fax: 301-427-1562, Email: denise.DOUGHERTY@AHRQ.hhs.gov.

SUPPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Section 401(a) of the Children's Health 
Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009 (CHIPRA), Public Law 111-
3, amended the Social Security Act to enact section 1139A (42 U.S.C. 
1320b-9a). Section 1139A(b) charged the Department of Health and Human 
Services (HHS) with improving pediatric health care quality measures. 
Since CHIPRA was passed, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality 
(AHRQ) and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) have been 
working together to implement selected provisions of the legislation 
related to children's health care quality (www.AHRQ.gov/CHIPRA). An 
initial core measure set for voluntary use by Medicaid and Children's 
Health Insurance Programs was posted December 29, 2009 (http://www.GPO.gov/fdsys/PKG/FR-2009-12-29/html/E9-30802.htm). In February 
2010, CMS released a State Health Official letter which outlined the 
initial core measures and how they should be reported to CMS.
    Subsequently, AHRQ and CMS established the CHIPRA Pediatric Quality 
Measures Program (PQMP) to enhance select pediatric quality measures 
and develop new measures as needed (http://www.AHRQ.gov/CHIPRA). CHIPRA 
stipulates that improved core measures be identified annually, 
beginning January 1, 2013. Under the PQMP, measures are being developed 
and improved by 7 AHRQ-CMS Centers of Excellence (http://www.AHRQ.gov/CHIPRA/PQMPFACT.htm). In addition, this notice seeks public nominations 
of measures for potential inclusion in Improved Core Sets.

[[Page 11120]]

    In order to assist AHRQ and CMS to assess the importance, validity, 
and feasibility of submitted measures, a Subcommittee on Children's 
Healthcare Quality Measures of the AHRQ National Advisory Council on 
Healthcare Research and Quality (SNAC) has been established (http://www.ahrq.gov/chipra/panellist11.htm). The Subcommittee will consider 
measures submitted through this public call, and measures submitted by 
the 7 AHRQ-CMS Centers of Excellence.
    CHIPRA asks that measures in the improved core sets be: evidence-
based; able to identify disparities by race, ethnicity, socioeconomic 
status, and special health care need; risk-adjusted as appropriate; and 
designed to ensure that data are collected and reported in a standard 
format that permits comparison of quality and data at a State, plan, 
and provider level.

    Dated: February 15, 2012.
Carolyn M. Clancy,
AHRQ Director.
[FR Doc. 2012-4267 Filed 2-23-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4160-90-M