The Institutes of Medicine (IOM) of the National Academies released a report, “Child and Adolescent Health and Health Care Quality: Measuring What Matters.” The IOM evaluated the state of efforts to measure child and adolescent health and the quality of their health care services. The report concludes that the lack of standardization between data sets, as well as the lack of information on physical and social environments, limits researchers’ ability to accurately assess the data.

To help overcome these barriers, the IOM recommends that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) provide leadership on standardization in key data areas and guide other improvements to measurement. In addition, the IOM recommends a stepwise approach for improving data sources and measures of health and health care quality for children and adolescents. The approach is designed to stimulate and support collaborative efforts among federal and state agencies and key stakeholder groups.