With the ever expanding CAHPS® services, it is no surprise that a Pediatric HCAHPS tool is in the works. The Agency for Health Care Research and Quality (AHRQ) and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) are working with the Center of Excellence for Pediatric Quality Measurement (CEPQM) to develop a survey that will measure a parent or guardian’s perception of the care their child received during an inpatient hospital stay.
Overall, the new survey tool will be very similar to the HCAHPS® survey, adapted in some areas to be applied to pediatric care. Several new questions, as well as new pediatric-specific domains, will be added as well. CEPQM lists some of the core domains of Pediatric HCAHPS as communication with doctors and nurses, pain management, and hospital environment. A few of the proposed new domains include accountability, cultural competence, and safety. Most unique to the Pediatric HCAHPS survey will be the questions regarding child-appropriateness and age-specific items.
CEPQM is currently finalizing the draft of the survey instrument, which should be completed in the next few weeks. With a final instrument, they will begin a national field test of Pediatric HCAHPS in the fall of 2012. The field test will take place over a 6-9 month period throughout 30-50 hospitals nationwide. Surveys must be administered by an HCAHPS®-approved vendor, such as The Jackson Group, using a mail or telephone mode. Sampling and eligibility of patients will align closely with HCAHPS® requirements, with the additional pre-requisite that patients be younger than 18, and parents be 18 or older.
Data collected from the field test will assist CEPQM in refining the survey instrument, developing a case-mix adjustment, and finalizing measure specifications. There are a few benefits to hospitals that participate in the national field test. By contributing data, hospitals will be able to help with the development of Pediatric HCAHPS based on their own organization’s needs and patients. The hospital’s scores will also contribute to future national Pediatric HCAHPS benchmarks. Finally, by beginning the surveying process during the field test, hospitals will establish a collection of data for report trending. It is important to note that although the field test will last no longer than 9 months, hospitals may continue using the Pediatric HCAHPS tool to survey beyond the testing dates.
Hospitals interested in being a part of the national field test should contact The Jackson Group for additional information as soon as possible at 800-554-0373 or email us at email@example.com.