The AHRQ Quality Indicators (AHRQ QIs) are measures of health care quality designed for use by program managers, researchers, and others at the Federal, State, and local levels interested in health care quality measurement. The AHRQ QIs provide health care decisionmakers with tools to assess their data, highlight potential quality concerns, identify areas that need further study and investigation, and track changes over time. The modules represent various aspects of quality: Prevention Quality Indicators (PQIs), Inpatient Quality Indicators (IQIs), Patient Safety Indicators (PSIs), and Pediatric Quality Indicators (PDIs). The AHRQ QIs are used in free software distributed by AHRQ; the software programs can be applied to hospital inpatient administrative data, which is readily available and relatively inexpensive to use.
The AHRQ Quality Indicators were originally developed at the request of Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project (HCUP) partners in 1999 using evaluation methodologies developed in the AHRQ Evidence-based Practice Centers (EPC). Over the years several refinements have been made to the original indicators by incorporating risk adjustment and reference population to improve the reliability and validity of the indicators. The PQIs were developed in 2000, the IQIs in 2002, the PSIs in 2003 and finally the PDIs in 2006 using ICD-9 CM codes. In 2012, several other enhancements were added such as present on admission (POA), laboratory values and key clinical values as well as conversion of AHRQ QIs to ICD-10 CM/PCS.