This measure summarizes the utilization of frequently performed procedures that often show wide regional variation and have generated concern regarding potentially inappropriate utilization.
Why It Matters
Wide variations among geographic regions in medical procedure rates appear to have little correlation with health outcomes. The reasons for this are unclear. Some variation is because of unnecessary procedures; conversely, some procedures may not be performed often enough. These rates are likely to be strongly influenced by how the organization manages care.
Variation in procedure rates present a starting point in examining the kind of care that is being rendered to members. Coding practices, epidemiology, demographics and practice patterns may be responsible for variation. Examining these measures may help eliminate unwarranted variation in the delivery of medical care.
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