A QDM attribute provides specific details about a QDM data element. QDM data elements have two types of attributes, datatype-specific and dataflow attributes. Datatype-specific attributes provide specific details on a datatype, e.g., Medication, Dispensed and Medication, Ordered contain information about dosage, route, strength, and duration of a medication, while a Medication allergy, contains information about the allergy type, allergy severity, etc. Dataflow attributes provide specific details about the location of data represented by a QDM data element e.g., Health Record Field indicates the location within an electronic record where the data should be found, Source indicates the originator of the QDM data element (an individual or a device), and a Recorder, the individual or device that enters the QDM data element into a health record field.
A QDM category consists of a single clinical concept identified by a value set. A category is the highest level of definition for a QDM element. The QDM currently contains 21 categories. Some examples of categories are Medication, Procedure, Condition/Diagnosis/Problem, Communication, and Encounter.
A QDM data element encapsulates a certain category with an associated datatype. It is a discrete unit of information used in quality measurement to describe part of the clinical care process, including a clinical entity and its context of use. It can include criteria for any relevant metadata about a clinical or administrative concept relevant to quality measurement. A QDM data element provides an unambiguous definition and enables consistent capture and use of data for quality measurement. It may be defined for any given measure and reused when the same information is required for another measure. Reuse encourages standardization of quality measures and reduces the generation of additional software requirements for every new measure.
A QDM datatype is the context in which each category is used to describe a part of the clinical care process. Examples of QDM datatypes include ‘Medication, Active’ and ‘Medication, Administered’ as applied to the QDM Medication category.
A quality or performance measure is a numeric quantification of healthcare quality for a designated accountable healthcare entity, such as hospital, health plan, nursing home, clinician, etc. A healthcare performance measure is a way to calculate whether and how often the healthcare system does what it should. Measures are based on scientific evidence about processes, outcomes, perceptions, or systems that relate to high-quality care.