The Foundation for Accountability, an alliance of healthcare purchasers and consumers, has established a formal base of operations and developed prototypes of its principal products: common-sense measures of healthcare performance.
Since unveiling the alliance last fall (Oct. 16, 1995, p. 52), the foundation has commissioned a number of academic researchers to summarize the state of the art in quality-measurement methods, said David Lansky, recently named the first president of the group.
The measures are being crystallized from those reports and will be subjected to public comment in April and May, he said.
A newly formed board of trustees is expected to make endorsements of specific performance measures by the end of May, Lansky said.
The foundation, which calls itself Facct for short, will attempt to get the measures written into payers' contracts with providers and included in such industry performance initiatives as the Health Plan Employer Data and Information Set, or HEDIS, Lansky said.
The activity stabilizes what was a loosely organized cooperative spun out of a series of meetings hosted by the Jackson Hole Group, a health policy development organization that originally gained visibility for its influence on the health reform plan of the early Clinton administration.
Now based in Portland, Ore., Facct put together a board that includes six representatives of consumer organizations, six members representing private-sector purchasers of healthcare, five public-sector representatives including two from HCFA, and a few at-large members including Paul Ellwood, president of the Jackson Hole Group.
Lansky was regional director of clinical information and director of the Center for Outcomes Research and Education at Portland-based Providence Health System.
A preliminary draft of Facct's first measures was submitted to the National Committee for Quality Assurance by its March 1 deadline for proposed additions to the next version of HEDIS planned by the NCQA for the end of 1996, Lansky said.
Facct leaders said their efforts are meant to speed up the development of healthcare performance measures that the public can understand and use to make decisions about their insurance coverage.
Instead of focusing on complex clinical processes, which typify measures created within the healthcare field, Facct said its measures will attempt to make comparisons possible about results of treatment and overall quality of life.