Quality Indicators Developed for Children With Sickle Cell

Forty one indicators covering 18 topics can assess quality of care, aid quality-improvement efforts

MONDAY, Aug. 15 (HealthDay News) -- A set of 41 quality-of-care indicators, which can measure and improve care among children with sickle cell disease (SCD), has been developed by an expert panel, according to a study published online Aug. 15 in Pediatrics.

C. Jason Wang, M.D., Ph.D., from the Boston University School of Medicine, and colleagues developed a set of quality-of-care indicators for the management of children with SCD who are cared for in a variety of settings, by addressing the relevant disease complications. The indicators were developed from the Rand/University of California Los Angeles appropriateness method, which included a comprehensive literature review with ratings of the evidence and two rounds of anonymous ratings by an expert panel. A face-to-face discussion for each indicator was conducted by the panelists in between the two rounds.

The investigators recommended a total of 41 indicators covering 18 topics; 17 indicators described routine health care maintenance, 15 described acute or subacute care, and nine describe chronic care. Eight specific indicators covering six topics were most likely to have a large positive effect on improving quality of life and/or health outcomes for children with SCD: timely assessment and treatment of pain and fever, comprehensive planning, penicillin prophylaxis, transfusion, and the transition to adult care.

"This set of 41 indicators can be used to assess quality of care and provide a starting point for quality-improvement efforts," the authors write.

The study was supported by Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp.

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