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Auffenberg GB, Ghani KR, Ye Z, et al. Comparing Publicly Reported Surgical Outcomes With Quality Measures From a Statewide Improvement Collaborative. JAMA Surg. 2016;151(7):680–682. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2016.0077
The recent release of a Surgeon Scorecard has accelerated debate around the merits of publicly reporting surgical outcomes.1 Based on Medicare claims from 2009 through 2013, this scorecard provides the public with surgeon-specific complication rates for 8 elective procedures performed by nearly 17 000 surgeons. While the intent of this effort—greater transparency leading to better outcomes—is laudable, many contend that the scorecard is misleading because it provides data for a single outcome measure that may not correlate well with other quality metrics.
We used data from the statewide clinical registry maintained by the Michigan Urological Surgery Improvement Collaborative (MUSIC) to evaluate this concern for one of the scorecard procedures—radical prostatectomy (RP) for prostate cancer. We specifically examined whether surgeon-specific complication rates reported in the scorecard correlate with several perioperative quality measures endorsed by MUSIC urologists and patient advocates.2
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