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CAHPS® Hospital Survey (HCAHPS)

Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has partnered with the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), another agency in the Department of Health and Human Services, to develop HCAHPS—the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems Survey.

Background

The HCAHPS initiative is intended to provide a standardized survey instrument and data collection methodology for measuring patients’ perspectives on hospital care. 

While many hospitals collect information on patient satisfaction, there is no national standard for collecting or publicly reporting this information that would enable valid comparisons to be made across all hospitals. 

What it is

HCAHPS can be viewed as a core set of questions that can be combined with a customized set of hospital-specific items.  HCAHPS is meant to complement the data hospitals currently collect to support improvements in internal customer services and quality related activities.

Implementation

Hospitals will voluntarily implement HCAHPS under the auspices of the Hospital Quality Alliance, a private/public partnership that includes the major hospital associations, government, consumer groups, measurement and accrediting bodies, and other stakeholders who share a common interest in improving hospital quality.

The hospital, or a vendor representing the hospital, will conduct the HCAHPS survey via paper, telephone or Interactive Voice Response (IVR). The survey data must be submitted via QualityNet in the specified XML file format by a registered QualityNet user (for more information, see QualityNet Registration). Users will also have the option of submitting survey data using an online data entry form available on My QualityNet.

From My QualityNet, survey data files will be uploaded to an HCAHPS data warehouse. Health Services Advisory Group (HSAG), the Arizona Quality Improvement Organization, will then calculate measures and case mix data. 

More information

For more information about the HCAHPS initiative, including the XML file layout and the data upload specifications, see HCAHPSOnline.org.

CAHPS® is a registered trademark of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, a U.S. Government agency.

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