The Environmental Scanning Support Tool (ESST) is a tool within the CMS Measures Inventory Tool (CMIT) environment. It makes it easier to complete the environmental scans required in the information gathering process to develop and maintain quality measures. The ESST reduces the time needed to scan literature from months to hours, saving immense amounts of resources. Conventional literature reviews use keyword searches to find the relevant research that has been published on a topic, a collection that may contain millions of documents. The ESST uses an automated natural language processing (NLP) approach that rapidly scans literature in PubMed and PubMed Central and the Cumulative Index of Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL) to:
Identify relevant documents (abstracts and full-text articles)
Identify and extract the specific knowledge within each relevant document that applies to the measure’s potential opportunity for improvement.