BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – Compassus Chief Medical Officer Kurt Merkelz, M.D., has been appointed to a two-year term on the Quality Measures Subcommittee of AMDA – The Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine. AMDA represents more than 50,000 clinicians who work in post-acute and long-term care.
“Kurt is recognized on the national stage for encouraging development of improved, person-centered national quality measures,” said Compassus Chief Executive Officer Jim Deal. “He is passionate about the importance of measures that align with the greatest concerns of patients and their families and addresses them in a way that supports each individual’s unique quality-of-life goals. His will be an important voice as AMDA works to influence public policy and explores opportunities to develop more meaningful end-of-life quality measures.”
Merkelz has called for systematic improvement of the health care system to include important drivers of health outcomes. In addition to his current AMDA appointment, he has served on committees of the National Quality Forum (NQF), the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) and the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine (AAHPM). Merkelz also contributed to the NQF National Quality Partners Playbooks for Opioid Stewardship and Shared Decision Making.
“The quality measures in place today are too often checklists of completed activities and based on assumptions rather than patient preferences,” said Merkelz. “We need ‘measures that matter’ in that they lead to better care by improving safety, independence, purpose and meaningful transitions at the end of life. I look forward to collaborating with AMDA to identify high-impact opportunities to support the delivery of consistent quality care oriented around each patient and their unique goals.”
The Quality Measures Subcommittee is part of the AMDA Public Policy Committee, which works to shape national policy issues, including legislation and regulation. The committee identifies issues of concern to its members and develops policy recommendations to submit to the Board of Directors for action. AMDA members work in skilled nursing facilities, long-term care and assisted living communities, continuing care retirement communities, home care, hospice and other settings.
Merkelz is triple board-certified in hospice and palliative care medicine, family practice and geriatrics. He is the primary architect of Care Delivery, The Compassus Way,™ a proprietary care delivery model with evidence-based best practices to elevate and standardize delivery of person-centered, outcomes-focused care. Care Delivery, The Compassus Way was honored by the National Quality Forum in its Next-Generation Innovator Program for Disruptive Approaches to HealthCare.