The National Committee for Quality Assurance released a new way to evaluate how well health plans treat members with chronic conditions in asthma, cardiac care, diabetes and mental health. The free, Web-based tool, called the Living with Illness Report, uses 13 of the 60 existing measures in the Health Plan Employer Data and Information Set. Previously the data were available only for purchase as part of the NCQA's Quality Compass, at a minimum cost of $3,150 for a single user. "We think it's going to be of interest to employers, consultants and health plans," NCQA spokesman Brian Schilling said of the resource. But the information was designed to be easy to interpret for even a lay audience, Schilling said. Data from 2003 is currently available; 2004 data should be online by mid-September, he said. -- by Joseph Conn
NCQA makes some health-plan data more available
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