For some of these measures involving screening, we know that providers should be doing these things 100% of the time, Burstin explained. But for many of the newly endorsed measures, "it's more of an issue of the need to get comparative data, and you're not going to get comparative data until people begin measuring, so it's a bit circular. But by putting comparative data out there, you get a standard set of child health quality measures and more information on the current state of child health. "
Asked why so many measures exist for non-pediatric types of care, such as for patients with heart attack, pneumonia, or congestive heart failure, Burstin gave three possible reasons.
First, she said, the evolution of CHIPRA, the 2.5-year old Children's Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act, designed to improve eligibility and coverage for children, is now using many of these and other measures.
Second, she said, there previously was a stronger emphasis on Medicare and the older adult, perhaps since more federal dollars were spent on care for people 65 and older.
But third, she said that "there's been a greater emphasis recently in thinking about wellness and what measures could be used to assess child health wellness and development."