Criteria Mapping: A Method of Quality Assurance
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Criteria mapping is a flexible and responsive method of chart audit that allows the simultaneous assessment of both the process and the outcome of care by means of health record abstraction. This method of audit is particularly suited to occupational therapy because it includes branching to reflect the sequential judgments of therapists and does not penalize the clinician for omitting unnecessary procedures. The purpose of this study was to determine the utility and reliability of the criteria mapping process in evaluating the quality of care for a self-care disability in an acute care setting. Three occupational therapists and one independent abstractor evaluated 12 charts twice. Intraobserver reliability calculated with intraclass correlation coefficients was .77 for the therapists and .65 for all observers. Interobserver reliability was .73 for the therapists and .72 for all observers. The criteria map provided comprehensive and relevant information about each chart. This paper discusses the implications of these findings for the ongoing monitoring of the quality of care in occupational therapy.
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