The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) (formerly known as the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research) is a part of the United States Department of Health and Human Services, which supports research designed to improve the outcomes and quality of health care, reduce its costs, address patient safety and medical errors, and broaden access to effective services. It sponsors, conducts, and disseminates research to help people make more informed decisions and improve the quality of health care services. It also acts as the regulator for Patient Safety Organizations that are certified under the Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act. The agency performs Health Outcomes Research.
AHRQ's mission is to improve the quality, safety, efficiency and effectiveness of healthcare for Americans. The agency is led by director .
The agency defines Quality Indicators (QIs) to measure health care quality based upon readily available hospital inpatient administrative data. These indicators consist of four modules measuring various aspects of quality:
Prevention quality indicator (PQI) identify hospital admissions that evidence suggests could have been avoided, at least in part, through high-quality outpatient care.
In-patient quality indicator (IQI) reflect quality of care inside hospitals including inpatient mortality for medical conditions and surgical procedures.