• Development of a measure of the content and quality of prenatal care services in a Medicaid population

      Newcomer, Wendy Elizabeth; Soeken, Karen (1996)
      Statement of the problem. The purpose of this study was to develop an instrument to measure the content and quality of prenatal care services in a population of low income women. Dimensions of performance as proposed by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations were used to define the quality of prenatal care. The United States Public Health Service Expert Panel Guidelines on the Content of Prenatal Care were used as the standard for the content of care. Methods. The Content and Quality of Prenatal Care Measure (CQPM), a prenatal care record review measure, was developed in this study. An assessment of content validity and intra- and inter-rater reliability was completed. Data collected for the validity sample of 163 records at two county health department sites was scored by content area. The Adequacy of Prenatal Care Utilization Index (APNCU) developed by Kotelchuck was used to categorize each record in the validity sample. Criterion-related validity was assessed with ANOVA using the CQPM scores as the dependent variable and the APNCU groups as the independent variable and by discriminant function analysis using the CQPM content scores as predictors for group membership in APNCU groups. Results. The mean percent agreement for each of the content areas for intra- and inter-rater reliability ranged from 72% to 95% with medical risk assessment having the highest reliability and health promotion having the lowest. Intra and inter-rater percent agreement for items ranking the quality of care was 70% and 51.6%. A significant difference between the groups was found in ANOVA, F(3,157):16.23, p < .00001, confirming criterion-related validity. The discriminant function analysis found an overall Lambda =.451941 (chi2 = 110.79, df 15, p < .00001). The prediction equation accounted for 62% of grouped cases being correctly classified also confirming criterion-related validity. Discussion. These results show that the Content and Quality of Prenatal Care Measure is reliable and valid and may be used to monitor care provided to low income populations and to conduct research on the content of prenatal care. Further research on weighting each item score in the CQPM and the reliability of items for special populations may be indicated.