CHA News Article

NQF Board Ratifies Recommendations on Sociodemographic Risk Adjustment

The National Quality Forum (NQF) board of directors met in late July to ratify the Consensus Standards Approval Committee’s (CSAC) recommendations augmenting the NQF expert panel recommendations on appropriately risk adjusting quality measures for socioeconomic and other sociodemographic factors. The NQF expert panel report concluded that NQF should change its policy to allow for sociodemographic status (SDS) adjustment of certain performance measures under certain conditions. While the report initially recommended a transition period during which a clinically adjusted version of the performance measure would be available for comparison to the SDS-adjusted score, CSAC subsequently recommended a trial period to test risk-adjusted measures in order to inform a more permanent NQF policy in the future.

CSAC also recommended that a new standing Disparities Committee be created to assist with the development of the trial period and its evaluation. The NQF board ratified the recommendations and noted it will develop details about the trial period and the charge of the Disparities Committee in the coming weeks. CHA submitted comments in April expressing support of the expert panel recommendations in their entirety. CHA continues to engage with NQF to better understand the implications of the final NQF decision and how the policy will be implemented.