Development of a New Patient-Based Measure of Pediatric Ambulatory Care

Center for Survey Research, University of Massachusetts, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.
PEDIATRICS (Impact Factor: 5.3). 10/2009; 124(5):1348-54. DOI: 10.1542/peds.2009-0495
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT In 1995, the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research initiated the Consumer Assessments of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) project to develop and evaluate survey protocols for collecting reliable and valid assessments of health care from consumers. CAHPS surveys are used throughout the United States for evaluating ambulatory and hospital care experiences, including a version for assessing pediatric ambulatory care; however, pediatric experts thought that the existing pediatric instruments did not adequately assess developmental and preventive care. The objective of this study was to develop and test an Ambulatory Pediatric CAHPS survey that focuses on clinicians and groups and includes measures of developmental and preventive care.
To develop the survey, we conducted 2 focus groups and conducted 9 cognitive interviews. We conducted a telephone pretest with 20 parents and coded potential problems with the interview (behavioral coding). We conducted a dual-language field test of the instrument with 670 parents who reported about their children's ambulatory care. We used data from that survey to assess the reliability and validity of the measures.
Questions about developmental monitoring and preventive care were developed and tested. Two scales that were based on those new questions had good internal consistency (coefficient alpha) and inter-physician reliability. A consortium of CAHPS investigators and federal sponsors have approved the resulting instrument as a national measure of pediatric care.
A new instrument for assessing ambulatory pediatric care by clinicians and groups that includes questions about developmental and preventive care is now available for use.

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