Sep 26, 2018


Qualidigm was recently awarded a contract by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) to continue the company’s 17-year support of the Medicare Patient Safety Monitoring System (MPSMS), which is considered the Gold Standard in hospital adverse event reporting. In this version of the contract, Qualidigm will assist AHRQ in transitioning the program from a chart-abstraction-based system to a new web-based chart-abstraction-system based on Quality and Safety Review System (QSRS) software and the AHRQ Common Formats for Surveillance. The new award supports further analysis to detect adverse events among patients from all hospitals across the United States.

MPSMS is the nation’s largest and most robust source of medical record abstraction-based database designed for patient safety tracking. The system focuses on patient harm rather than medical error by identifying patient exposures to specific in-hospital patient care processes and associated adverse events, along with patient characteristics, co-morbidities, antecedent conditions, and patient outcomes. MPSMS relies on manual abstraction of patient records which can be labor intensive. This award supports AHRQ’s future vision of a monitoring system that relies less on manual chart abstraction and is designed to transition to the use of structured data and other data contained in electronic medical records (EMRs). The QSRS will offer other important adverse events such as those associated with inpatient opioid administration that are not measured in MPSMS.

“The movement toward electronic measures increases dramatically the nation’s ability to monitor many more hospitals simultaneously in near real-time,” said Qualidigm president and CEO, Dr. Tim Elwell. “Seventeen years ago, Qualidigm developed the MPSMS surveillance system with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) and AHRQ, which is used by the Federal Government and researchers across the country to assess and measure national patient safety trends. We are thrilled to support the transition to the QSRS by providing our expertise to improve algorithms for extracting patient safety information,” said Elwell.

MPSMS is a primary source of information for the National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Reports and national initiatives sponsored by CMS to improve healthcare quality and patient safety. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services received a Pinnacle Award from the American Pharmaceutical Association for the Department’s work to reduce adverse drug events, which was demonstrated by the use of MPSMS data in the Partnership for Patients. Additionally, the team has published several articles on MPSMS findings in leading publications including the New England Journal of Medicine and Journal of the American Medical Association.