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Reducing Disparities through Data Collection and Quality Improvement Initiatives: The MGH Annual Report on Equity in Healthcare Quality

Project Description: In 2006, Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) was among the first hospitals in the U.S. to analyze key quality measures stratified by race, ethnicity, and language in an effort to identify existing disparities across the MGH system. In addition to reporting on standard inpatient and outpatient clinical quality measures MGH analyzes race, ethnicity, and language data at the departmental level with new measures included each year. MGH is continuing to innovate by examining disparities in patient outcomes in addition to standard process measures. The process of producing the Annual Report on Equity in Healthcare Quality (AREHQ) has substantially increased institutional capacity in health equity and quality improvement research. This process also examines data captured and stored in electronic health records. By effectively communicating the research process, results, and outcomes associated with the AREHQ, we have brought issues of equity in healthcare quality to the fore and garnered the support of the hospital’s senior leadership. This process is supported by MGH President, Dr. Peter Slavin, and the Senior Vice President for Quality and Safety, Dr. Elizabeth Mort. The Center for Quality and Safety has formally prioritized this work by including the elimination of disparities in quality of care in its annual strategic goals and continuing to commit resources to producing the AREHQ.

Primary contact: Joseph R. Betancourt, M.D., M.P.H.; Director, Disparities Solutions Center
Institution: Massachusetts General Hospital

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