Performance Measurement Network

Question: Can you explain the difference between core and non-core measures?


At the Joint Commission, we refer to our consensus-based, standardized sets of measures (e.g., currently in place for Acute Myocardial Infarction (AMI), Heart Failure (HF), Pneumonia (PN), Pregnancy and Related Conditions (PR), ChildrenÂ’s Asthma Care (CAC), Surgical Care Improvement Project (SCIP), Hospital-Based Inpatient Psychiatric Services (HBIPS), Hospital Outpatient Department (OP), Stroke (STK), and Venous Thromboembolism (VTE)in the hospital setting) as "core measures"; that is, all health care organizations, regardless of what vendor they use, are implementing the measures in the same standardized way, and therefore, these data are comparable across vendors. The Joint Commission calculates national comparison group data based on the hospital-level data submitted by our listed measurement system vendors on behalf of our accredited hospitals. We make these core measure specifications and comparison data available to the public. You can find the manual on our website at:

A listing of our core measurement systems, their contact information, and the core sets they support is on our website at:

We refer to vendor-specific measures (i.e., the vendor defines the measure specifications) as "non-core measures"; since the specifications/data elements used for calculation of a c-section measure, for example, may vary vendor by vendor, these results are NOT comparable across vendors. In a separate process, the Joint Commission evaluated these vendor measures and deemed those found to be acceptable for use in our accreditation process as non-core measures that can be offered to organizations to meet ORYX requirements. Comparison group data is provided to the Joint Commission quarterly by the vendor, based on other vendor clients using the same measure(s). Questions related to non-core measures should be directed to the listed measurement system; contractually, the Joint Commission is unable to share non-core measure details with interested parties as much of this information is proprietary in nature. Availability of these measures/data to the public is up to the individual vendor and their client relationships.

A listing of our non-core measurement systems, their contact information, and the areas of measurement they support is on our website at:

Question Details
Focus area(s): Operational and Data Quality Processes, Non-core Measurement / Review Process

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