National Quality Measures for Breast Centers (NQMBC): A Robust Quality Tool

Bellingham Breast Center, University of Washington, Bellingham, WA, USA.
Annals of Surgical Oncology (Impact Factor: 3.94). 10/2009; 17(2):377-85. DOI: 10.1245/s10434-009-0729-5
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Measuring and improving quality of care is of primary interest to patients, clinicians, and payers. The National Consortium of Breast Centers (NCBC) has created a unique program to assess and compare the quality of interdisciplinary breast care provided by breast centers across the country.
In 2005 the NCBC Quality Initiative Committee formulated their initial series of 37 measurements of breast center quality, eventually called the National Quality Measures for Breast Centers (NQMBC). Measures were derived from published literature as well as expert opinion. An interactive website was created to enter measurement data from individual breast centers and to provide customized comparison reports. Breast centers submit information using data they collect over a single month on consecutive patients. Centers can compare their results with centers of similar size and demographic or compare themselves to all centers who supplied answers for individual measures. New data may be submitted twice yearly. Serially submitted data allow centers to compare themselves over time. NQMBC random audits confirm accuracy of submitted data. Early results on several initial measures are reported here.
Over 200 centers are currently submitting data to the NQMBC via the Internet without charge. These measures provide insight regarding timeliness of care provided by radiologists, surgeons, and pathologists. Results are expressed as the mean average, as well as 25th, 50th, and 75th percentiles for each metric. This sample of seven measures includes data from over 30,000 patients since 2005, representing a powerful database. In addition, comparison results are available every 6 months, recognizing that benchmarks may change over time.
A real-time web-based quality improvement program facilitates breast center input, providing immediate comparisons with other centers and results serially over time. Data may be used by centers to recognize high-quality care they provide or to identify areas for quality improvement. Initial results demonstrate the power and potential of web-based tools for data collection and analysis from hundreds of centers who care for thousands of patients.

1 Bookmark
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Margin status is one of the most important determinants of local recurrence following breast conserving surgery. The fact that up to 60% of patients undergoing breast conserving surgery require re-excision highlights the importance of optimizing margin clearance. In this review we summarize the following perioperative measures currently available that aim to enhance margin clearance: (1) patient risk stratification, specifically risk factors and nomograms, (2) preoperative imaging, (3) intraoperative techniques including wire-guided localization, radioguided surgery, intraoperative ultrasound-guided resection, intraoperative specimen radiography, standardized cavity shaving, and ink-directed focal re-excision; (4) and intraoperative pathology assessment techniques, namely frozen section analysis and imprint cytology. Novel surgical techniques as well as emerging technologies are also reviewed. Effective treatment requires accurate preoperative planning, developing and implementing a consistent definition of margin clearance, and the use of readily available tools that provide detailed real-time information on margin status during the primary surgery.
    Surgical Oncology 06/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.suronc.2014.03.002 · 2.37 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Variation in the quality of breast care affects outcomes. Objective measurement tools are central to this effort. Most quality measures are process measures. Application of these improves quality. Many national organizations are promoting them for purposes ranging from feedback to providers to public reporting and directing payment. Surgeons should evaluate their own practices and should be involved in local, regional and national efforts to assess and improve breast care. (C) 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    Journal of Surgical Oncology 10/2014; 110(5). DOI:10.1002/jso.23760 · 2.84 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The current study sought to define best practice for timeliness for a breast cancer program at each diagnostic step. The study was a retrospective review of patients newly diagnosed with invasive breast cancer who were enrolled in the breast cancer database from 2009-2011. A convenience sampling methodology was used for patient selection, and descriptive statistics for various time intervals were calculated for identified data points from abnormal imaging to surgery. No evidence-based practice standards exist for access to breast cancer care. Practice guidelines that include benchmarks for quality measures and an established process to measure patient outcomes would promote high-quality care. An understanding of how practice sites function also would help healthcare providers identify and develop resources to improve patient outcomes. In the current study, the advanced practice nurse (APN) in the practice setting was identified as a key point person in facilitating patients' timely access to healthcare services. The physician and APN practice model was instrumental in influencing the process. The results of the current study provided clinical data to identify benchmarks that a breast oncology practice can use to monitor timeliness as a quality indicator.
    Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing 02/2014; 18(1):82-8. DOI:10.1188/14.CJON.82-88