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Practices and effects of outcome quality indicators in healthcare
 conference presentation


Practices and effects of outcome quality indicators in healthcare


Dec 2022                


A partner from Med Uni Innsbruck / Biobank Innsbruck presented a study on "Practices and effects of outcome quality indicators in healthcare" at the Danish National Biobank event "Biobanking as the cornerstone for translational research" (16 Nov 2022).



Quality measurement in healthcare has become a central interest for many different players such as governments, providers, researchers or patients. However, the use of quality indicators remains highly controversial due to divergent definitions of "healthcare quality", measurement problems and different approaches as to how to measure quality.


Therefore, a researcher from the University of Innsbruck (now being in the Biobank Innsbruck team) investigated in the course of an FWF-funded project the conditions, controversies and effects of mandatory outcome quality measurement in Austria (termed Austrian Inpatient Quality Indicators). They performed ethnographic research in hospitals and analyzed the ways in which Austrian Inpatient Quality Indicators were applied.


The study revealed that despite their mandatory status, Inpatient Quality Indicators were used only in a superficial way and impacted management and healthcare practices only to a minor extent. Several reasons were discussed for the marginal use and impact of Austrian Inpatient Quality Indicators.


This research encourages future studies to investigate the application and effects of quality measurement systems. The healthcare sector is rapidly changing and new treatment methods will emerge due to Big Data or biobanking. It will be interesting to see how quality indicators influence practices and to what extent they will be made transparent.