The Washington D.C.-based non-profit URAC, which focuses on healthcare quality through accreditation and the Leapfrog Group, a voluntary program aimed at mobilizing employer purchasing power, are developing a best practices awards program that will help hospital websites promote transparency of quality measures. The program, titled Excellence in Hospital Website Transparency Best Practices Awards and Acknowledgement Program, will be eligible to all hospitals who publically report their Leapfrog Hospital Survey results.
It will award hospitals based on results that derive from two parts. The first part is an analysis of the overall website transparency, determined by an objective criteria established in accordance with the National Quality Forum’s (NQF) guidelines for consumer-focused, Internet-based public reporting of health performance data as well as the Model Public Report Elements prepared for the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and other research-based criteria. The criterion includes design, credibility, literacy, and connectivity. The second part will evaluate applicants in terms of best practices in website transparency and reporting, and is determined by a panel of expert judges.
Those who meet a minimum of the first part will receive an Acknowledgement of Excellence in Hospital Website Transparency award. Of those hospitals, three will be selected by the judging panel to receive the Best Practices in Hospital Website Transparency award. The awards program will be launched in April 2012, and all applications must be completed by September.