Measuring the Quality of a Childhood Cancer Care Delivery System: Assessing Stakeholder Agreement
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OBJECTIVES: We described previously the development of a set of quality indicators (QIs) of a childhood cancer system in Ontario, Canada. The purpose of this study was to determine the acceptability of the proposed set of QIs among stakeholders of the childhood cancer system. METHODS: A modified Delphi method was used to assess stakeholder agreement on the value of the proposed QIs. A QI evaluation survey was mailed to a stakeholder group of 23 multidisciplinary health care providers, survivors, parents, and policymakers who rated each QI on specific criteria. Prior to an in-person consensus meeting, the distribution of scores was provided to panel members. At the meeting, QIs were reevaluated and discussed in three successive rounds. QIs with 80% or more of panel agreement were considered endorsed. RESULTS: Overall, 20 QIs were endorsed by the panel, measuring all seven quality dimensions of Ontario's Cancer System Quality Index framework. Five QIs were endorsed by 100% of the panel as follows: Five-year event-free survival, chemotherapy admission delay, drug availability, sufficient multidisciplinary staff, and parent satisfaction. Although none of the QIs relating to end-of-life or Satellite care were endorsed, panel members emphasized the need to measure these components of the system. CONCLUSIONS: Standardized implementation of the 20 pediatric cancer QIs endorsed by the multidisciplinary stakeholder panel will provide ongoing monitoring of various dimensions of system quality and the development of benchmarks over time, greatly augmenting the ability to identify needed system improvements across populations and jurisdictions.
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