Pediatric Quality Indicators Overview
The Pediatric Quality Indicators (PDIs) are a set of measures that can be used with hospital inpatient discharge data to provide a perspective on the quality of pediatric healthcare. Specifically, PDIs screen for problems that pediatric patients experience as a result of exposure to the healthcare system and that may be amenable to prevention by changes at the system or provider level.
Development of quality indicators for the pediatric population involves many of the same challenges associated with the development of quality indicators for the adult population. These challenges include the need to carefully define indicators using administrative data, establish validity and reliability, detect bias and design appropriate risk adjustment, and overcome challenges of implementation and use. However, the special population of children invokes additional, special challenges. Four factors—differential epidemiology of child healthcare relative to adult healthcare, dependency, demographics, and development—can pervade all aspects of children’s healthcare; simply applying adult indicators to younger age ranges is insufficient.
This PDIs focus on potentially preventable complications and iatrogenic events for pediatric patients treated in hospitals, and on preventable hospitalizations among pediatric patients.
The PDIs apply to the special characteristics of the pediatric population; screen for problems that pediatric patients experience as a result of exposure to the healthcare system and that may be amenable to prevention by changes at the provider level or area level; and, help to evaluate preventive care for children in an outpatient setting, and most children are rarely hospitalized.