Field of Work: Measuring quality of health care
Problem Synopsis: Numerous studies had documented serious deficits in the quality of health care in the United States. But most of these studies focused on a single condition, a small number of indicators of quality, persons with a single type of insurance coverage, or persons receiving care in a small geographic area. As a result, there was no comprehensive view of the level of quality of care given to the average person in the United States. This information gap contributed to a persistent belief that quality was not a serious national problem.
Synopsis of the Work: From 1997 to 2002, researchers with the RAND Corporation assessed the quality of care delivered to a large sample of patients living in 12 U.S. communities. The resulting publications provided the first national snapshot of health care quality in the United States.
Key Findings: Publications in health care journals such as the New England Journal of Medicine, the Annals of Internal Medicine, and Health Affairs presented the findings: