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PQA Recognizes Kaiser Permanente Hawaii for Excellence in Medication Safety
Date:6/2/2011

HONOLULU, June 2, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Kaiser Permanente Hawaii has received the inaugural Pharmacy Quality Alliance (PQA) Quality Award.  This award recognizes Kaiser Permanente's achievement of a 5-star rating on the PQA measures of medication safety that are included in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Star Rating Program.  

"This award is truly unique because it uses publicly available quality data from CMS," said Laura Cranston, PQA's Executive Director. "Therefore, plans don't have to be nominated, they simply have to perform exceptionally well on transparent measures of medication safety.  Selections for this inaugural award were made by examining the performance criteria of hundreds of Medicare contracts."

The plans were recognized for achieving the highest CMS rating — 5-stars — on medication safety measures for High Risk Medications and Diabetes Treatment.  They also had an overall CMS 4-star rating as a health plan.  Nationally, only two other health plans received this PQA recognition, including Kaiser Permanente of Colorado. *

"We are honored to be one of only a few plans in the country to be recognized by PQA, for medication and patient safety," said Barbara Kashiwabara, Kaiser Permanente Hawaii Director of Pharmaceutical Services.  "Our patient-centered model promotes collaboration and improves communication between the care team and the member, resulting in better care outcomes, increased patient satisfaction, and increased patient safety."  

Kaiser Permanente Hawaii recently received the National Committee for Quality Assurance's (NCQA) Physician Practice Connections® (PPC) Patient-Centered Medical Home™ Recognition for its integrated and coordinated care delivery system, which supports quality, access, continuity of care, and better patient involvement. The PCMH is a model of care that seeks to strengthen physician-patient interaction with coordinated care and a long-term healing relationship. It is gaining acceptance nationally as a best-practice method of care delivery and is a promising tool for successful health care reform implementation.

Kaiser Permanente Hawaii was also recently rated as having the highest-rated Medicare, Medicaid, and commercial plan in the state, according to NCQA Health Insurance Plan Rankings 2010-11. All three plans are also accredited with NCQA's highest quality rating.

Kaiser Permanente Hawaii has provided total health to the people of Hawaii for more than 50 years. Care for members is focused on their total health being guided by their personal physicians, specialists, and team of caregivers. Expert care and medical teams are supported by industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the-art care delivery, and world-class chronic disease management. Its physicians are members of the Hawaii Permanente Medical Group, the largest multi-specialty physician group practice in the state of Hawaii. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care innovations, clinical research, health education, and the support of community health. Visit kp.org for additional information.

*Plan performance summary star ratings are assessed each year and may change from one year to the next

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