President’s Blog | What does the COVID-19 pandemic mean for health care measurement and reporting?

Two medical professionals look at test tube

As the COVID-19 crisis continues to upend business as usual in health care, many people are wondering what it will mean for health care quality and cost measurement and reporting. In the near term, there are questions about data collection to measure 2019 health care provider and health plan performance. In the longer term, there are many other questions to consider, such as how future measurement and public reporting will account for disruptions in health care delivery during the pandemic and how it will evolve to reflect changes in health care delivery that are likely to be permanent – such as increased use of virtual health care visits.

MN Community Measurement has created a new page on our website to serve as a resource for monitoring changes that are happening to health care measurement efforts in Minnesota and nationally. The page includes current information on how MNCM measurement activities are changing, and it is also intended to serve as a go-to resource for up to date information and links to what the federal government, the state of Minnesota, and the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) have announced in terms of their requirements and data collection. The situation continues to evolve, so we encourage you to check this page for updates and let us know if there are additional resources that would be helpful for us to include.

We don’t have the answers yet to many of these questions, but I want to assure you that MN Community Measurement will take a collaborative approach to answering them. We are interested in gathering and understanding the perspectives of health care providers, health plans and government payers, employers, consumers, and others. We are planning to engage MNCM’s Measurement and Reporting Committee (MARC) closely in the work, and we will gather stakeholder perspectives through other mechanisms as well.

Finally, I’d be remiss if I didn’t note that in the midst of all of this change, MNCM is also continuing to implement its new data collection platform called PIPE. Conceived nearly three years ago, the goal of PIPE is to make it much easier for health care providers to submit data for quality measures and to provide timely feedback to providers that supports their performance improvement efforts. One additional advantage of PIPE is that it will allow for much greater flexibility in measurement – for example, to adjust measurement parameters and definitions in a much nimbler way that can support good decisions about how quality measures should evolve in the future. To learn more about PIPE, please contact MNCM.

Thank you for your partnership. Stay safe and stay healthy!

Julie Sonier

Julie Sonier is President and CEO of MN Community Measurement.