Kentucky Core Healthcare Measures Set Expands to 38 Adult and Pediatric Primary Care Measures

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Stephanie Clouser

After a summer of deliberations by committees, the 2019 Kentucky Core Healthcare Measures Set has been finalized, increasing the number of core measures from 34 to 38.

The final vote resulted in the removal of three measures, addition of seven measures, and the upgrade of two measures from “standard” priority to “high” priority. Measures added include opioid treatment agreement, progress towards depression remission, diabetes blood pressure control, childhood and adolescent well care visits, HPV immunization, and patient experience. Measures related to diabetes and cardiovascular disease medication adherence and bronchitis antibiotic avoidance have been removed.

This year’s update ensures that the measures on the core measures set are current, relevant, and sound. The Kentucky Performance Alignment Committee – or PMAC – and its subcommittees have spent the last months reviewing the current measures set, examining potential measures for addition, and confirming or questioning the current measures’ relevance.

The core measures set was developed and released through a public-private partnership with the goal of creating a core measures set for Kentucky stakeholders to align to. The core measures set is focused in the areas of prevention, pediatrics, chronic and acute care management, behavioral health, and cost/utilization.


In 2018, the PMAC team chose a few “stretch measures” that might have had a few more challenges to them but ultimately were important to impacting the health of Kentuckians. This year, the committee and subcommittees chose a few more of those stretch measures, including Weight Assessment and Counseling for Nutrition and Physical Activity for Children/Adolescents and Depression Response at Twelve Months – Progress Towards Remission. The data extraction required of these measures makes them more challenging to measure.

The full list of changes is as follows:

  • Add Documentation of Signed Opioid Treatment Agreement
  • Add Adolescent Well-Care Visits
  • Add Weight Assessment and Counseling for Nutrition and Physical Activity for Children/Adolescents
  • Add Comprehensive Diabetes Care: Blood Pressure Control
  • Add Depression Response at Twelve Months – Progress Towards Remission
  • Add CG-CAHPS
  • Modify Immunizations for Adolescents to break out HPV
  • Upgrade Comprehensive Diabetes Care: Eye (Retinal) Exam to high priority
  • Upgrade Comprehensive Diabetes Care: Nephropathy to high priority
  • Remove Medication Adherence for Diabetes
  • Remove Medication Adherence for Cardiovascular Disease
  • Remove Antibiotic Avoidance in Adults with Acute Bronchitis.

You can find the complete list of 2019 KCHMS measures here. For more information on the core measures set, click here.


The 2019 KCHMS will be rolled out at a KHC Community Health Forum on September 10, “Driving Health Improvements Through Measurement Alignment.” The Forum will highlight national and local measurement alignment efforts aimed at reducing measurement burden, improving focus, and ultimately measuring what matters most to patients.

Chinwe Nwosu, America’s Health Insurance Plans, will discuss the advancement of quality measurement and improvement through core measures sets. Nwosu, the project manager for the Core Quality Measures Collaborative (CQMC), a broad-based coalition of health care leaders convened by America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) starting in 2015. It includes Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the National Quality Forum (NQF), health insurance providers, medical associations, consumer groups, purchasers (including employer group representatives), and other quality collaboratives. The KHC joined this collaborative in recent months. CQMC members work to identify Core Measure Sets – parsimonious sets of scientifically sound measures that efficiently promote a patient-centered assessment of quality and should be prioritized for adoption in value-based purchasing and alternative payment models.

Faith Green, Humana, will also talk about her organization’s journey to align their measures across product lines. KHC’s Stephanie Clouser will introduce the 2019 KCHMS. The morning will end with an expert panel discussion about the current landscape and future of healthcare measurement in the Commonwealth and will include:

  • Jenny Goins, Commissioner, Department of Employee Insurance, Kentucky Personnel Cabinet
  • Michael Hagen, Professor, Dept of Family and Community Medicine, University of Kentucky
  • Amy Mattingly, Provider Collaboration Director, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kentucky
  • Angela Parker, Director, Program Quality and Outcomes, Department for Medicaid Services
  • Rachelle Seger, Community Health Research Officer, Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky

The Forum will take place from 7:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. on Tuesday, September, 10. As always, registration is free for individuals who work for a KHC member organization and $35 for anyone else. For more information on the Forum, click here.

More information on the core measures set, including future areas of development, will be shared in the future.

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