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OECD Paris Initiative: Assessing Health Systems Through the Patient’s Eyes

For several years, EPF has been calling for patient-centredness to be adopted as a key aspect of healthcare quality measurements and for appropriate indicators to be developed. For this reason, we were delighted to see the launch of the OECD PaRIS Initiative in January 2017, which does just that.

The Ministerial Statement, “The Next Generation of Health Reforms”, gave the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) a mandate to develop comparable cross-country indicators for patient-reported outcome measures (PROMs) for different health conditions, and measures for assessing patients’ experiences of care (PREMs).

The PaRIS (“Patient Reported Indicators Surveys”) initiative comprises two main areas of work:

1.       in those areas where measures already exist, the OECD working group will adopt validated sets of standardised, internationally comparable indicators;

2.       in those areas where appropriate measures do not yet exist, OECD will lead the development of internationally comparable indicators.

EPF’s Cooperation with OECD

EPF has developed closer relations with OECD in recent years, with representatives of that organisation having attended our conferences and internal meetings to interact with our membership and learn about patients’ views on quality of care.  Specifically, EPF and our members have given input on a proposed core set of questions for patient-reported safety incident measures (PRIMS) which is also currently in development, in parallel to PaRIS.

There is a close link between PaRIS and another OECD initiative: EU framework on Health Systems Performance Assessment (HSPA). In that context, the organisation will be developing indicators and collecting data, which will be used to inform EU policy and may eventually be included in the formal EU health statistics framework.

It is significant that EPF is invited to participate. Our role will be twofold: we bring the added value of a patient perspective to every meeting and play the part of a “critical friend” to ensure that any measure developed reflect what matters to patients (given that many existing so-called PROMs were not co-developed with patients, it is not a given that they really reflect the patient perspective).

One particularly important future area will be the development of cross-disease indicators and measures for the experience of patients with multiple chronic conditions.

Next steps

We will be involving the membership as appropriate at all stages of the project, and will also be alerting you whenever there may be opportunities to contribute to disease-specific indicators sets.

For more information, please contact