Measuring and Improving Health Outcomes in Medicare: The Medicare HOS Program

Haffer, Samuel C. (Chris); Bowen, Sonya E.
June 2004
Health Care Financing Review;Summer2004, Vol. 25 Issue 4, p1
Academic Journal
The Medicare Health Outcomes Survey (HOS) (originally called the Health of Seniors Survey) was developed as a longitudinal performance measure to assess the physical functioning and mental well being of Medicare beneficiaries over time. The survey was implemented nationally in Medicare managed care organisations (MCOs) as part of Medicare HEDIS®, 3.0/1998 and continues today. In 1998, a pilot test of the HOS in Medicare FFS was conducted; the pilot test concluded in 2001. This overview discusses the importance of functional status assessment, reviews the goals of the HOS, and explains how researchers and quality improvement professionals are using the data to explore functional status measurement issues, describe policy and programmatic implications for CMS, and identify opportunities to improve health care practice.


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