Challenges to electronic clinical quality measurement using third-party platforms in primary care practices: The healthy hearts in the heartland experience

Faraz S. Ahmad*, Luke V. Rasmussen, Stephen D. Persell, Joshua E. Richardson, David T. Liss, Pauline Kenly, Isabel Chung, Dustin D. French, Theresa L. Walunas, Andy Schriever, Abel N. Kho

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

Third-party platforms have emerged to support small primary care practices for calculating and reporting electronic clinical quality measures (eCQM) for federal programs like The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA) and Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS). Yet little is known about the capabilities and limitations of electronic health record systems (EHRs) to enable data access for these programs. We connected 116 small- to medium-sized practices with seven different EHRs to popHealth, an open-source eCQM platform. We identified the prevalence of following problems with eCQM data for data extraction in seven different EHRs: (1) Lack of coded data in five of seven; (2) Incorrectly categorized data in four of seven; (3) Isosemantic data (data within the incorrect context) in four of seven; (4) Coding that could not be directly evaluated in six of seven; (5) Errors in date assignment and labeled as historical values in five of seven; and (6) Inadequate data to assign the correct code in two of seven. We recommend specific enhancements to EHR systems that can promote effective eCQM implementation and reporting to MACRA and MIPS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)423-428
Number of pages6
JournalJAMIA Open
Volume2
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019

Keywords

  • Electronic health records
  • Health care quality assessment
  • Health information technology
  • Meaningful use
  • Primary care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Informatics

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