Development of performance tracking for a pediatric hospitalist division

Natalia Paciorkowski, Cassandra Pruitt, Dana Lashly, Chrissy Hrach, Elizabeth Harrison, Mythili Srinivasan, Michael Turmelle, Douglas Carlson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVES: Our goal was to develop a comprehensive performance tracking process for a large pediatric hospitalist division. We aimed to use established dimensions and theory of health care quality to identify measures relevant to common inpatient diagnoses, refl ective of current standards of clinical care, and applicable to individual physician performance. We also sought to implement a reproducible data collection strategy that minimizes manual data collection and measurement bias. METHODS: Washington University Division of Pediatric Hospital Medicine provides clinical care in 17 units within 3 different hospitals. Hospitalist services were grouped into 5 areas, and a task group was created of divisional leaders representing clinical services. The group was educated on the health care quality theory and tasked to search clinical practice standards and quality resources. The groups proposed a broad spectrum of performance questions that were screened for electronic data availability and modified into measurable formulas. RESULTS: Eighty-seven performance questions were identified and analyzed for their alignment with known clinical guidelines and value in measuring performance. Questions were distributed across quality domains, with most addressing safety. They reflected structure, outcome, and, most commonly, process. Forty-seven questions were disease specific, and 79 questions reflected individual physician performance; 52 questions had electronically available data. CONCLUSIONS: We describe a systematic approach to the development of performance indicators for a pediatric hospitalist division that can be used to measure performance on a division and physician level. We outline steps to develop a broad-spectrum quality tracking process to standardize clinical care and build invaluable resources for quality improvement research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)118-128
Number of pages11
JournalHospital Pediatrics
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2013


  • Electronic medical record
  • Hospitalist
  • Pediatric
  • Performance indicators
  • Quality improvement


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