Kaiser Permanente Leads the Nation in 13 Medicare Measures


In addition to leading the nation among commercial health plan measures, Kaiser Permanente tops U.S. in quality scores in health plans for seniors

OAKLAND, Calif., Nov. 28, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Kaiser Permanente again leads the nation among Medicare health plans with the most No. 1s, receiving top marks for the country in 13 out of 37 effectiveness of care measures. That information was released publicly as part of the 2012 National Committee for Quality Assurance's Quality Compass® dataset for Medicare annual report.

No other Medicare health plan in the nation, out of the nearly 400 that were considered by NCQA, had more than four No.1 national rankings among the effectiveness of care measures. The measures assess the performance of national health plans on nearly four dozen important clinical and service standards. Kaiser Permanente received top marks for:

  • Breast cancer screening, age 42-69 (Southern California)
  • Use of Spirometry Testing in the Assessment of COPD (Hawaii Region)
  • Pharmacotherapy Management of COPD Exacerbation — Bronchodilator (Southern California)
  • Cholesterol management (coronary artery disease), LDL Screening (Hawaii)
  • Cholesterol management (coronary artery disease), LDL level less than 100 mg/dl (Colorado)
  • Controlling high blood pressure — cardiovascular (Ohio)
  • Comprehensive diabetes care — HbA1c Testing (Hawaii)
  • Comprehensive diabetes care — LDL level less than 100 mg/dl (Northwest)
  • Comprehensive diabetes care — Medical Attention for Nephropathy (Colorado)
  • Comprehensive diabetes care — blood pressure control (<140/80) (Georgia)
  • Comprehensive diabetes care — blood pressure control (<140/90) (Colorado)
  • Osteoporosis management in women who had a fracture (Southern California)
  • Potentially harmful drug-disease interaction — Dementia (Hawaii)

"At Kaiser Permanente, we are committed to providing high-quality care to all our members through evidence-based measures," said Amy Compton-Phillips, MD, associate executive director of Quality with The Permanente Federation, a national organization representing the eight Permanente Medical Groups. "The Quality Compass ratings demonstrate that our doctors and care teams excel in proactive prevention of illness, early detection of disease, and better treatment of chronic conditions. We are greatly honored that our Medicare plans have received such excellent ratings."

Kaiser Permanente also had the most No.1 scores for the commercial health plans of America. When the quality results for commercial health plans were announced in October, Kaiser Permanente had 16 top marks out of 40 measures in that report. The 29 total top rankings – 16 commercial and 13 Medicare – are by far the most No.1 rankings for health plans in this country.

The high scores for quality for Medicare patients by NCQA is the latest in a string of national accolades Kaiser Permanente's Medicare health plans have received this year for quality and service.

Earlier this year, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services rated more than 500 Medicare health plans using more than 50 measures of quality and service. CMS graded plans on a scale of 1 to 5 stars, then awarded their top 5-star rating to only 11 health plans in the entire country. Six Kaiser Permanente health plans, representing seven geographical areas, were rated among those 11 5-star plans. The lowest score for a Kaiser Permanente health plan for the CMS ratings was 4.5 stars on their 5-star scale.

NCQA in September also ranked Kaiser Permanente's three largest health plans — with a total membership of more than 7 million — as the three top Medicare plans in the country.

"Our unique integrated delivery system enables us to provide high-quality patient-centered care that meets the individual needs of our members and patients," said Jed Weissberg, MD, senior vice president, Hospitals, Quality and Care Delivery Excellence, Kaiser Permanente. "The ratings support our great accomplishments, encourage our health plans to continually improve care and service, and lead to better and safer patient experiences."

Kaiser Permanente employs roughly 180,000 caregivers in its network of hospitals and clinics. The medical teams and the outcomes they achieve are supported by nearly 2,000 researchers at Kaiser Permanente. The organization's researchers conduct epidemiologic, health services and clinical trials to improve the health and medical care of Kaiser Permanente members and society at large. Kaiser Permanente research — with the technological assistance of Kaiser Permanente HealthConnect®, the largest non-governmental electronic health record system in the world — works to address important questions, expand best -practices information, and develop care delivery strategies that will translate newly acquired knowledge into improved care.

NCQA is a private, non-profit organization dedicated to improving health care quality. NCQA accredits and certifies a wide range of health care organizations. It also recognizes clinicians and practices in key areas of performance. NCQA is committed to providing health care quality information for consumers, purchasers, health care providers and researchers.

The source for data contained in this publication is Quality Compass® 2012 and is used with the permission of the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA). Quality Compass 2012 includes certain CAHPS data. Any data display, analysis, interpretation, or conclusion based on these data is solely that of the authors, and NCQA specifically disclaims responsibility for any such display, analysis, interpretation, or conclusion. Quality Compass is a registered trademark of NCQA. CAHPS® is a registered trademark of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).

About Kaiser Permanente
Kaiser Permanente is committed to helping shape the future of health care. We are recognized as one of America's leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans. Founded in 1945, our mission is to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve. We currently serve more than 9 million members in nine states and the District of Columbia. Care for members and patients is focused on their total health and guided by their personal physicians, specialists and team of caregivers. Our expert and caring medical teams are empowered and supported by industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the-art care delivery and world-class chronic disease management. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care innovations, clinical research, health education and the support of community health. For more information, go to: www.kp.org/newscenter.

Contact: Mark Camps, Kaiser Permanente, 510-625-5624

SOURCE Kaiser Permanente