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URAC Invites Public Input in Response to Revisions to Health Plan and Health Network Accreditation Programs
Date:4/1/2008

New standards support principles of Consumer-Purchaser Disclosure Project, include review of physician quality measurement programs

WASHINGTON, April 1, 2008 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today URAC called for public comment on revisions to its Health Plan and Health Network accreditation program standards. URAC is seeking input from all interested parties, including purchasers, policy makers, consumers, health care management organizations and health plans. The deadline for public comment is May 19, 2008.

(Logo: ttp://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20030501/URACLOGO )

Among the revisions are specific standards applicable to those organizations that implement and publicly report on their physician quality measurement programs. The new standards are consistent with the general principles proposed by the Consumer-Purchaser Disclosure Project in its Patient Charter for Physician Performance, Measurement and Tiering Programs.

"These revisions align with URAC's strategic focus on enhancing consumer empowerment and protection through accreditation," said Alan P. Spielman, URAC's president and CEO. "The standards are a blueprint for organizations to develop systems that give consumers the information they need to make choices based on provider quality."

The Patient Charter is supported by leading consumer, labor and employer groups and aligns with URAC's work over the past four years to enhance consumer education, safety and empowerment through its accreditation programs.

"The Health Network and Health Plan Standards have completed the first round of updates by the Standards Committee. Many enhancements and clarifications have been proposed. This includes the introduction of new standards to address Health Care Performance reporting," said Douglas Metz, chairman of the Health Standards Committee and chief health services officer for American Specialty Health.

Performance reporting on quality is an important c
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