The repair of inguinal hernias is one of the most common surgical procedures in the United States - with approximately 700,000 operations done each year. “Although inguinal hernia repair is a common procedure, there are still many unanswered questions that rigorous assessment of real world data may address,” said Benjamin K. Poulose, M.D., M.P.H., Director for Quality and Outcomes, Americas Hernia Society Quality Collaborative (AHSQC). “Incorporating the AHSQC into clinical practice has the potential to help improve efficiency and enhance care by analyzing some of these unknowns.”
AHSQC aims to improve the value in hernia care delivered to patients. Formed by hernia surgeons in private practice and academic settings, the AHSQC utilizes concepts of continuous quality improvement to improve outcomes and optimize costs. This is accomplished through a registry powered by ArborMetrix that delivers patient-centered data collection, ongoing performance feedback to clinicians, and analysis of collected data that supports research and collaborative learning.
To build and support a tailored registry, AHSQC leadership and ArborMetrix defined and configured specific measures, data models, and reports that bring together clinical data and patient reported outcomes for hernia repair in one easily accessible cloud-based system. The precise measures and models within the AHSQC registry provide clinical relevance and a clear picture of performance to participating surgeons.
By using the ArborMetrix analytics engine, and real-time measures and reports, the AHSQC is able to identify which processes are associated with the best outcome, and learn what can be done differently to improve standards of care. “ArborMetrix dynamically benchmarks performance in real-time, which is crucial for tracking the impact of quality improvement interventions,” Dr. Poulose said. “This has allowed AHSQC to improve the quality and cost-effectiveness of hernia repair by providing surgeons with immediate, risk-stratified metrics to determine the best procedure for an individual patient based on various factors."
The actionable reports powered by ArborMetrix help AHSQC facilitate a process for continuous improvement at the society and individual surgeon level.
Data from the AHSQC registry feeds the Ventral Hernia Support Tool, which predicts and displays complication rates and resource utilization in a manner that allows for efficient clinical trade-off decisions between open, laparoscopic and robotic surgical techniques. Specifically, the calculator predicts surgical site infections (30-day), readmission (30-day), hernia recurrence (one year), and hospital length of stay. Raw and post-analytics data are shared collaboratively among the society, surgeons, industry partners and the FDA in support of post-market surveillance initiatives to improve surgical hernia repair.
AHSQC and its members have collectively achieved outstanding results and greatly enhanced care for their patients. A few highlights include:
Learn more about AHSQC at ahsqc.org.
1 AHSQC Newsletter, September 2016. https://www.ahsqc.org/images/uploads/general_images/AHSQC_Newsletter_FINAL.pdf
2 AHSQC Website, June 2017. https://www.ahsqc.org/news
3 AHSQC Press Release, February 2017. http://www.prweb.com/releases/2017/02/prweb14054179.htm
“ArborMetrix dynamically benchmarks performance in real-time, which is crucial for tracking the impact of quality improvement interventions. This has allowed AHSQC to improve the quality and cost-effectiveness of hernia repair by providing surgeons with immediate, risk-stratified metrics to determine the best procedure for an individual patient based on various factors."
Director for Quality and Outcomes, Americas Hernia Society Quality Collaborative