The advantages and disadvantages of process-based measures of health care quality

Int J Qual Health Care. 2001 Dec;13(6):469-74. doi: 10.1093/intqhc/13.6.469.


As consumers, payers, and regulatory agencies require evidence regarding health care qualities the demand for process of care measures will grow. Although outcome measures of quality represent the desired end results of health care, validated process of care measures provide an important additional element to quality improvement efforts, as they illuminate exactly which provider actions could be changed to improve patient outcomes. In this essay, we discuss the advantages and disadvantages of process measures of quality, and outline some practical strategies and issues in implementing them.

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Process Assessment, Health Care*
  • Quality Assurance, Health Care
  • Quality Indicators, Health Care*