The Maine Health Management Coalition’s public ratings are all each vetted by the Pathways to Excellence Clinician and Systems Steering Committees before they are reported on www.getbettermaine.org. Where possible, Pathways to Excellence uses national recognition programs like Bridges to Excellence (BTE) and the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) to assess clinician and hospital quality, but where there are not metrics available, as with orthopedics and cardiology, the steering committees create them. All Pathways to Excellence metrics are formed, tested, and implemented with the support of providers, employers, insurers, and other key stakeholders.
Primary Care Doctors who treat adults, voluntarily submit clinical information to Bridges to Excellence and/or the National Committee on Quality Assurance. These organizations in turn conduct assessments and generate rankings regarding the quality of the care being provided. The participating adult doctors and cardiologists or heart doctors may also submit information about the tools they use in maintaining and transferring medical information, and assisting their patients. Bridges to Excellence and the National Committee on Quality Assurance are independent, non-profit organizations that publish information about how well doctors and their staffs across the U.S. are doing at taking care of their patients. Once a ranking is given it remains valid for two to three years.
Pediatricians also voluntarily submit clinical information to us. Because there is no national organization that performs assessments or rankings of pediatricians, we developed our own quality assessment program. In developing our assessment program we held forums of local doctors, patients, employers and health plan representatives and thereby determined what questions to ask and how to assign our ratings. Furthermore; we periodically conduct random telephonic and on-site audits of practices to help assure that our participants are honestly and accurately submitting their information.