HealthDay News — Data on certain health outcomes has been added to Physician Compare, the Affordable Care Act website designed to help consumers search for information about healthcare providers, according to a report published by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

The quality measures that have been added include:

  • Blood glucose and BP control rates for patients with diabetes
  • Aspirin prescribing rates for patients with diabetes and heart disease
  • Medication prescribing rates for patients with heart disease and specific comorbidities
  • Tobacco cessation rates for patients with diabetes

Provider ratings for each measure are displayed using stars, a graphical representation of performance intended to
to make the information more usable and easy to scan for consumers. The actual percentage score is also listed to the right of the star display.

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“This is an important first step in publicly reporting quality measures on Physician Compare,” Patrick Conway, MD, chief medical officer and deputy administrator for Innovation and Quality, said in a statement. “Offering a strong set of meaningful quality measures on the site will ultimately help consumers make decisions and it will encourage quality improvement among the clinician community, who shares CMS’s strong commitment to the best possible patient care.”

Physician Compare was created as part of healthcare reform efforts to aid consumers in making informed choices about their care. The website includes data from 66 group practices and 141 Accountable Care Organizations.

The website already contains information about specialties offered by doctors and group practices, board certification and affiliation with hospitals and other health care professionals.