New AHRQ report shows states vary widely in providing quality health care

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality's (AHRQ) annual release of State-by-State quality data continues to give States mixed reviews for the quality of care they provide. As in previous years, AHRQ's 2008 State Snapshots show that no State does well or poorly on all quality measures.


The AHQR press release notes that the 2008 State Snapshots provide State-specific health care quality information, including strengths, weaknesses and opportunities for improvement. The State-level information used to create the State Snapshots is drawn from the 2008 National Healthcare Quality Report, which was released in May by HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and contributes to a national portrait of health care quality.


The 2008 State Snapshots summarize health care quality in three dimensions: type of care (preventive, acute and chronic care), setting of care (hospitals, ambulatory, nursing homes and home health care) and by clinical areas (cancer, diabetes, heart disease, maternal and child health and respiratory disease). The 2008 State Snapshots allow users to explore whether a State has improved or worsened compared with other States in several areas of health care delivery.


The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is also releasing State-by-State reports on the health care status quo. The reports are available at


(SOURCES: Advisory Board Daily Briefing,, June 29, 2009; AHRQ,, accessed July 7, 2009)