Center for Quality and Patient Safety

Quality Core Measures

To deliver unsurpassed quality to every patient, every time is the vision that drives our work. To give our patients and families the best care possible, we measure how we’re doing in 26 areas, from infection rates and patient survival to missed appointments and family satisfaction. We look at data across Seattle Children’s and compare the hospital-wide average to results for specific ethnic or racial groups or hospital units. Every day, we ask ourselves how we can do better.

In 1999, the Institute of Medicine (IOM), now the National Academy of Sciences, released To Err Is Human: Building a Safer Health System, a report that brought much public attention to the crisis of patient safety in the United States. In 2001, the National Academy of Sciences issued a second report, Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for the 21st Century, which outlines six overarching "Aims for Improvement" for health care. We track our core metrics based on these 6 domains of healthcare.

  • Effectiveness, with metrics such as readmissions and length of stay
  • Efficiency, tracking patient flow and data on items such as missed appointments and timeliness of organ transplantation
  • Equity, looking at rates of infection, initiation of critical care support and missed appointments for specific ethnic or racial groups compared to the hospital-wide average
  • Patient-centered, measuring patient families’ likelihood to recommend Seattle Children’s for care in specific hospital units
  • Safety, measuring central line–associated bloodstream infections (CLABSIs), hospital-acquired conditions (HACs), serious safety events (SSEs) and initiation of critical care support after patient admission
  • Timeliness, with metrics ranging from answering phones to time to antibiotics for patients with sepsis (bloodstream infections)

Over time, we will publish details on our outcomes, why the specific metrics matter and what we are doing to improve.