Measuring quality in healthcare

An important feature to improve quality of care is to reduce variation and learn from best practices with the best outcomes. Although variation in the way care is delivered can be legitimate, there is evidence that differences in outcomes between providers, and in the cause of an international comparison, are inordinately large. To gain insight in the mechanisms leading to variation in quality of care, measurement of outcomes is crucial. Measurement of performance on rare disease treatment makes international auditing crucial since a wider geographical and cultural spread increases variation of quality of care. Moreover, with more patients in the audit statistical analysis becomes viable since the sample size is increased.

The general objective of the EPSA (European Pediatric Surgery Audit) is to set up a pan-European patient registry for different congenital intestinal malformations with the aim to standardise the collection of the scarce data from different EU member states and to achieve a sufficient sample size for epidemiological and clinical research. The registry will have a strong focus on outcomes, both clinical outcomes and patient reported outcomes. Comparing outcomes between different healthcare providers will improve clinical practice and quality of care.