Patient-reported outcomes in the Swedish National Quality Registers

J Intern Med. 2016 Feb;279(2):141-53. doi: 10.1111/joim.12409. Epub 2015 Aug 26.


Patient-reported outcomes (PROs) are important in the healthcare system to gain understanding of patients' views on the effects of a treatment. There is an abundance of available patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs), both disease specific and generic. In the Swedish healthcare system, the national quality registers are obliged to incorporate PROs for certification at a high level. A review of the latest annual applications for funding (n = 108) shows that at present, 93 national quality registers include some form of PROM or patient-reported experience measure (PREM). Half of the registers include some type of generic measure, more than half include disease/symptom-specific measures, and around 40% include PREMs. Several different measures and combinations of measures are used, the most common of which are the EQ-5D, followed by the SF-36/RAND-36. About one-fifth of the registers report examples of how patient-reported data are used for local quality improvement. These examples include enhancing shared decision-making in clinical encounters (most common), as a basis for care plans, clinical decision aids and treatment guidelines, to improve the precision of indications for surgery (patient and healthcare professional assessments may differ), to monitor complications after the patient has left hospital and to improve patient information. In addition, funding applications reveal that most registers plan to extend their array of PROMs and PREMs in future, and to increase their use of patient-reported data as a basis for quality improvement.

Keywords: PREM; PROM; health-related quality of life; quality improvement; quality register.

MeSH terms

  • Arthroplasty* / psychology
  • Cataract Extraction / psychology
  • Critical Care / psychology
  • Electronic Health Records
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Hip Joint*
  • Humans
  • Patient Outcome Assessment*
  • Patient Satisfaction*
  • Practice Guidelines as Topic
  • Quality Improvement*
  • Quality of Life*
  • Registries*
  • Stroke / psychology
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Sweden