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Why use these indicators/measures?


AHRQ Inpatient Quality Indicators

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), a federal agency charged with overseeing quality of care, developed the Inpatient Quality Indicators (IQIs) used in this report. The IQIs allow comparison among Utah patients and similar patients nationwide based on the State Inpatient Databases 2006 through the expected rate. These databases represent about 90% of all inpatients in the U.S. from participating states in 2006 and are the most recently available, national data,. The Health Care Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP) collects these data every year.

The AHRQ IQIs are nationally recognized indicators and are used in this report in compliance with the mandates of Senate Bill 132, the Health Care Consumer’s Report Bill, which was passed in 2005.


Measures for average hospital charge are All Patient Refined Diagnosis Related Groups (APR-DRGs) for similar, though not identical, kinds of pneumonia in this report's quality of care section. APR-DRG software, widely used in health care research, organizes about 20,000 clinical diagnoses and procedures into about 300 groups.  Read this report’s Technical Document to learn more.

Each APR-DRG has four levels for severity of illness. This report shows average hospital charge for minor and moderate severity of illness levels combined and average hospital charge for major and extreme severity of illness levels combined. This report uses APR-DRG version 20.0, because the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) uses it for expected rate in the Inpatient Quality Indicators (IQIs).
Please note that other Utah Department of Health reports that include average charge information use APR-DRG Version 15.0 for data from 2004 and earlier.

Also be aware that the number of patients in the IQI may not be the same as the number of patients for a similarly named APR-DRG.  First, the APR-DRGs are hierarchical, mutually exclusive groups of conditions and procedures.  A patient’s APR-DRG reflects that patient’s most resource-intensive condition and/or procedure.  Second, each IQI has patient exclusion and inclusion criteria that may not be the same as those for a similar APR-DRG.  Third, the IQI is based on three years of data because the annual number of deaths per indicator is often small.  For more information, see this report’s Technical Document.

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Last updated: January 6, 2009 9:58 AM