Quality Measurement in Adult Cardiac Surgery: Part 1-Conceptual Framework and Measure Selection

David M. Shahian, Fred H. Edwards, Victor A. Ferraris, Constance K. Haan, Jeffrey B. Rich, Sharon Lise T. Normand, Elizabeth R. DeLong, Sean M. O'Brien, Cynthia M. Shewan, Rachel S. Dokholyan, Eric D. Peterson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

205 Scopus citations


The Society of Thoracic Surgeons established a Quality Measurement Task Force to develop a methodology for the comprehensive assessment of adult cardiac surgery quality of care, including both individual measures and an overall composite quality score. In Part 1 of a two-part series, the Task Force describes the conceptual framework, principles, and guidelines used to select and categorize the individual measures that comprise the composite score. Quality indicators were selected using the following principles:. 1Quality assessment should be at the level of the program or hospital rather than the individual surgeon.2Initial quality reports should focus on coronary artery bypass grafting surgery.3Quality measures should be chosen from among those endorsed by the National Quality Forum.4Quality measure selection should be consistent with the principles and criteria recommended in the 2006 Institute of Medicine report Performance Measurement: Accelerating Improvement.5Quality measures should be available as data elements within The Society of Thoracic Surgeons National Adult Cardiac Surgery Database.6Quality scores should consider structure, process, and outcomes.7Quality scores should assess three temporal domains-preoperative, operative, and postoperative.8Quality scores should satisfy multiple criteria for validity.9Quality scores should be interpretable and actionable by providers. Eleven individual measures of coronary artery bypass grafting quality within four domains were selected:1Perioperative Medical Care, a process bundle of four medications including preoperative β-blockade and discharge aspirin, β-blockade, and lipid-lowering agents.2Operative Care, a single process measure-use of at least one internal mammary artery.3Risk-Adjusted Operative Mortality.4Postoperative Risk-Adjusted Major Morbidity, defined as the risk-adjusted occurrence of any of the following: renal failure, deep sternal wound infection, reexploration, stroke, or prolonged ventilation/intubation. In summary, The Society of Thoracic Surgeons Quality Measurement Task Force has selected a group of measures to serve as the basis for comprehensive assessment of adult cardiac surgery quality. Part 2 of this report describes the statistical considerations relevant to combining these measures into composite scores, then using such scores as the basis for a provider rating system.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S3-S12
JournalAnnals of Thoracic Surgery
Issue number4 SUPPL.
StatePublished - Apr 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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