What is the Quality Data Model (QDM)?

The Quality Data Model (QDM) is an information model that defines relationships between patients and clinical concepts in a standardized format to enable electronic quality performance measurement. The model is the current structure for electronically representing quality measure concepts for stakeholders involved in electronic quality measurement development and reporting. The QDM is currently being aligned with other relevant clinical decision support (CDS) standards.

The QDM provides the language that defines the criteria for clinical quality measurement. It allows the electronic definition of a clinical concept via its data elements and provides the vocabulary to relate them to each other. By relating attributes between data elements and using filtering functions, the QDM provides a method to construct complex clinical representations for electronic clinical quality measures. The QDM provides the foundation for the conceptualization and specification phases in the eCQM Measure Lifecycle.

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Category - A single clinical concept that is the highest level of definition for a QDM element e.g., Medication, Procedure, Condition/Diagnosis/Problem, Communication, Encounter. The QDM currently contains 19 categories.

Data Type - Provides context within a category e.g., in a ‘Medication’ category, ‘Medication, Active” and ‘Medication, Administered’ are particular data types.

Attribute - Provides specific detail within a data type. There are two types of attributes, data type specific attributes and data flow attributes.

  • Data type specific attributes - Provides specific detail on a data type e.g., Medication, Dispensed and Medication, Ordered contains information about dosage, route, strength, and duration of a medication, while a Medication allergy, contains information about the allergy type, allergy severity, etc.

  • Data flow attributes - Provides specific detail about the location of data represented by a QDM 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 quality data element (an individual or a device), and a Recorder, the individual or device that enters the data element into a health record field.

Participation in the QDM User Group

The QDM User Group is a group of volunteer members who use the QDM for measure development, measure implementation, alignment with related standards and more. View the QDM User Group Charter for more information about the group. If you are interested in participating in the User Group, please send an email to qdm@esacinc.com.

QDM 4.3 Resources

QDM Versions

Draft QDM 5.0 for use with Clinical Quality Language (CQL) is found on the CQL page.

Previous Versions of the QDM and Guidance Documents

Help and Feedback

For questions or comments on the QDM, please contact qdm@esacinc.com.

To submit an issues ticket, please visit the ONC JIRA site Web Site Disclaimers