San Francisco — Using nationally recognized quality measures, the Performance Profile in the “Find a Provider” section of www.blueshieldca.com is designed to provide easy, online access to quality scores, efficiency indicators and patient satisfaction scores for hospitals, as well as HMO medical groups and independent practice associations (IPA). Blue Shield is the first California health plan to integrate detailed performance measures into an online provider directory, according to the company.

"Consumers are looking online for information to help them evaluate and choose a healthcare provider, but it's sometimes hard to find," says Alan Sokolow, EVP and chief medical officer at Blue Shield of California. "Performance Profile offers useful, quality data that makes it easier for members to choose a hospital or an HMO medical group that fits their specific needs."

The Performance Profile quality measures are based on national standards that are endorsed by national quality organizations such as the National Quality Forum, the Joint Commission and the National Committee for Quality Assurance. Independent third-party groups, including the Integrated Healthcare Association (IHA) Pay-for-Performance program, the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (H-CAHPS), Leapfrog Hospital, and the California Hospital Assessment and Reporting Taskforce (CHART), provide scores.

Additional measures produced by Blue Shield are selected for display based on impact to member health and finances. Blue Shield also adheres to the Patient Charter for Physician Performance Measurement, Reporting and Tiering Programs, ensuring both consumers and physicians will be able to understand, trust and contribute to how health plans rate doctors' performance.

All scores are reported as percentages and are based on a scale from 0 to 100. For HMO medical groups and IPAs, detailed scores will include preventative health screenings; care for diabetes; heart health; asthma; adolescents and pediatrics; and patient satisfaction. For hospitals, detailed scores will include patient satisfaction, Leapfrog Quality & Safety and cost indicators.

"In addition to guiding members in their healthcare decisions, Performance Profile will help doctors and hospitals focus on areas to improve," says Michael-Anne Browne, regional medical director for quality at Blue Shield of California. "Blue Shield is committed to working closely with the providers in our network to enhance quality and lower costs for our members."

Source: Blue Shield of California

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