The home health care data presented on CalQualityCare.org is the result of efforts by the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences and the Institute for Health and Aging at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF SBS/IHA), a nonprofit and public educational institution dedicated to improving health care quality.
UCSF SBS/IHA publishes CalQualityCare.org and oversees the development and maintenance of this website. UCSF SBS/IHA is also responsible for aggregating the data and compiling the ratings.
UCSF SBS/IHA is dedicated to advancing knowledge of health, illness, and medical illness through theory and research that evaluates the organization, financing, and delivery of health care; and to examine the broad dynamics of health policy and health care services. For more information, visit https://nursing.ucsf.edu/about/departments/social-and-behavioral-sciences.
The data on CalQualityCare.org come from the following California state and United States federal government sources, as well as from recognized accrediting organizations. The data have been gathered in various ways — including facility visits, self-reported data, and information submitted by clients or family members — and at different times. The data on CalQualityCare.org are updated quarterly with the most current information available.
Consumers should pay attention to the date data were collected, which can be accessed through the “more information” popup boxes found next to the data on each provider’s profile page (represented by a question mark button). While we make every effort to ensure the data are as current as possible, we are limited by how often the state and federal governments gather the information.
The data sources for home health care are:
- Program and ownership information: the California Department of Public Health’s Licensing and Certification Program, Electronic Licensing Management System (ELMS)
- Agency characteristics, clients, staffing, and financial data: California Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development’s annual utilization report for Home Health Agencies and Hospices (CA OSHPD)
- Deficiency and complaint data: the federal CMS Certification and Survey Provider Enhanced Reporting (CMS CASPER) database
- Quality of care data: Medicare’s Home Health Compare website (CMS HH Compare)
- Accreditation: Community Health Accreditation Program (CHAP) and The Joint Commission (TJC)
About the Ratings
CalQualityCare.org provides performance ratings for home health care agencies in two areas: Quality of Agency and Quality of Care.
Quality of Agency
The CalQualityCare Rating is based on the number and type of deficiencies the agency receives during routine inspections or complaint investigations over the most recent three-year period. Deficiencies for violating federal standards fall under two categories: condition-level or standard-level deficiencies. Condition-level deficiencies are the most serious and indicate harm or the potential to harm clients. An agency is in danger of losing its certification if it does not correct the problem within 28 or 90 days, depending on severity. Standard-level deficiencies are less serious than condition-level deficiencies, and require the agency to submit a plan of corrective action.
- Superior: Agency has had no deficiencies (about 50% of home health agencies in California)
- Above Average: Agency is in the top third group with the fewest standard-level deficiencies
- Average: Agency is in the middle third group with regard to the number of standard-level deficiencies
- Below Average: Agency is in the bottom third group with the most standard-level deficiencies
- Poor: Agency has had one or more condition-level deficiency (about 12% of agencies)
If an agency had two or more complaints, then the rating was lowered one level, however the minimum level is poor.
Quality of Care
There are 21 quality of care measures. The CalQualityCare Rating is determined by grouping the scores for each quality measure into fifths by level of performance. Agencies are rated as follows:
- Superior: Agency ranks in the 81 – 100% range
- Above Average: Agency ranks in the 61 – 80% range
- Average: Agency ranks in the 41 – 60% range
- Below Average: Agency ranks in the 21 – 40% range
- Poor: Agency ranks in the 0 – 20% range
Each quality measure is given an equal weight. If an agency has any missing scores, then the summary score is calculated based on the quality measures that are available.
For the specific deficiencies for a home health care program, see the California Department of Public Health’s Licensing and Certification Program (L&C).
Technical Guide to the Home Health Care Ratings
To read the complete ratings methodology for home health care on CalQualityCare.org, download the PDF, “Technical Guide to the Home Health Care Ratings.”