Importance of Data Accuracy
Multiple mechanisms are in place to assure the accuracy of data reported in VQI
- Error trapping is used in the data entry platform PATHWAYS to reduce entry of out of range values.
- Help text is provided on the data entry form in PATHWAYS for each variable, explaining each categorical, numeric and checkbox options.
- Frequent webinars are conducted for data managers and staff who enter data, to educate them about each VQI registry, and answer questions about data entry
- User support is provided to answer questions about data entry and a technical FAQ is provided online. Clinical FAQ’s are incorporated into help text to ensure standardization of variable definitions.
- Annual national meetings and semi-annual regional meetings further educate users about details of data entry and answer questions.
- Surveys of user responses to abstract data from prepared example cases are analyzed to detect variation in user interpretations, so that education can be focused on any common errors. (Interrater reliability exercises)
- Centers receive detailed reports of their process and outcome rates, so that they can detect any errors and correct them if needed.
- Statistically based audits have been conducted by using multi-variable models to predict cases where a complication (such as post-operative myocardial infarction) was likely to have occurred. Then such cases where no such complication was reported are audited to ensure accuracy.
- Random audits of cases and specific variables are now being conducted by external auditors who gain access to the center’s EMR data to verify accuracy of data entry.
- Results of nearly 300 peer-reviewed publications based on VQI data agree well with published data from other sources, providing additional validation of the accuracy of data reported by the VQI registry.