As the NDNQI measure evidence-based practice recommends capturing data on all falls, regardless of location, WSHA has updated the data systems that members interact with, which include the QBS system as well as how DASH reports fall data. These updates will support our hospitals with identifying opportunities and facility-unique vulnerabilities. As a result of this, effective July 1, 2021, members submitting fall data to QBS will notice a change in how the data is inputted along with how the data will be displayed within DASH, which may appear as if your fall numbers are higher than previously seen.
The timing and transition of this NDNQI Fall Prevention language occurred on July 1 to support and sequence with the WA State Medicaid Quality Incentive (MQI). In partnership with the Washington State Healthcare Authority (HCA), WSHA collects the quality initiatives on behalf of our member facilities that are eligible and participate in the WA State Safety Net Program. The Falls Measure is included in the 2021 MQI Incentive.
We want to remind our members that our goal is to have hospitals reporting number of falls occurring from each of the designated units per month and to move away from “fall rates.” WSHA recognizes this is a new way of thinking and that previous data in QBS will be difficult to compare to moving forward.
WSHA remains committed to reducing patient harm related to falls and will continue to support you as you develop and implement evidence-based practices focused on decreasing falls. In addition to aligning to current industry standards and best practice in fall prevention, we look forward to continuing to work with hospitals to implement Post Fall Management strategies along with evaluating fall outcomes data to identify facility fall risk stratification and potential vulnerabilities within specific populations. You can access additional fall prevention resources online here or send questions to Amy Anderson at email@example.com.
There are also several metric improvements and updates that health care providers working on fall prevention should be aware of:
- Falls Prevention Measure Alignment. Over the last several years, WSHA has aligned our quality improvement metrics with the industry standards in health care quality and/or the standards necessary under federal contractual language. The Falls with Injury measure had been aligned historically with the National Quality Forum (NQF) 0202 NQF 0202. WSHA’s member data repository, the Quality Benchmarking System (QBS), is the source for members submitting data on the falls measure and others.
- Retirement of NQF 0202. In January 2020, the NQF retired the Falls with Injury metric, as aim and trajectory in best practice has advanced to looking at falls more broadly. The recently adopted metric regarding falls, NDNQI 2020 includes a more comprehensive perspective to capture all falls, whether injurious/non-injurious, along with including clinical units within the hospital and emergency department settings.