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ARTICLE |

Health Care Quality:  Incorporating Consumer Perspectives

Paul D. Cleary, PhD; Susan Edgman-Levitan, PA
JAMA. 1997;278(19):1608-1612. doi:10.1001/jama.1997.03550190072047.
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The goal of this article is to address, from the perspective of users of the health care system (consumers), the following questions: What are the most important health care quality gaps and/or challenges; what major changes should we anticipate in this area in the near future; and what should be the role of federal and state agencies, accreditation organizations, and philanthropic foundations in addressing these challenges? We discuss the needs, challenges, and potential action steps for increasing the prominence of the user's perspective in 3 areas: (1) the conceptualization and definition of quality; (2) the measurement of quality; and (3) routine quality assessment and improvement. The article concludes by making recommendations about the role that different agencies and organizations can and should play in meeting these challenges.

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The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
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