Inaugural conference places Australia on the map when it comes to measuring the effectiveness of medical procedures

4 May 2017: Evaluating how successful medical treatments are has always been difficult, because the way success is measured varies from hospital to hospital, and across the world. The International Consortium for Health Outcomes Measurement (ICHOM) is an organisation whose purpose is to transform health care systems worldwide by measuring and reporting patients’ outcomes in a standardised way, wherever the procedure takes place.

HCF has continued to demonstrate its position as a leader in the value and measurement of health outcomes, as a major sponsor of the inaugural ICHOM Australasian Forum, held in Sydney at the beginning of May. The Forum brought together a range of influential people from across the health care sector – from private and public health, to government and health charities. It provided them opportunity to explore a move towards an Australian health care system which is focused on quality and consistent outcomes for patients.

Consistent, global measurement of health care standards

The Australian health care system isn’t alone when it comes to balancing increased cost pressures, seeking to improve patient outcomes and reacting to their changing needs and expectations. Identifying these issues on a global scale, ICHOM has developed outcome measures – called Standard Sets – which will set a benchmark for the treatment of a range of specific health care conditions and procedures.

ICHOM is working towards a world where we look at the outcome measures that really matter to patients – like the ability to get back to work, do household chores and live a normal life. They also want both patients and clinicians to be better equipped to ask all the right questions ahead of a procedure.

In simple terms, judging the success of a knee replacement (for example) should be consistent from one country to the next.

Why is this important for HCF?

For HCF, support for this work is driven by a commitment to making healthcare high quality and customer-centric.

In addition to HCF’s sponsorship of the conference, the HCF Research Foundation is a strategic partner of ICHOM. The Foundation is working with ICHOM to develop two new Standard Sets – in Oral Health as well as Pregnancy and Childbirth, which is now complete. Its aim is to better measure health care results in these areas, and ultimately improve patient outcomes.

The HCF Research Foundation has also provided funding for to Dr Ilana Ackerman, whose research study will implement the ICHOM Standard Set for Hip and Knee Osteoarthritis for patients having joint replacement surgery for osteoarthritis in public and private hospitals. It will evaluate the feasibility and costs of implementation and explore the experiences of patients and medical staff after it has been implemented.