The National Neurosurgery Quality and Outcomes Database (N2QOD)

There continues to be a growing need for a valid platform to define appropriate benchmarks of value and quality. In the past, administrative, claims-based data sets have been used to provide insight into healthcare costs and outcomes. Promoting the best medical care requires acquisition of high quality patient-centered data related to the safety, effectiveness and cost. Clinical data registries are valuable tools that support evidence development, performance assessment, comparative effectiveness studies, and the adoption of new treatments into routine clinical practice. Regularly observing patient responses to treatment can provide important insights into which health care strategies work best in actual practice. Practice data can also serve as a meaningful resource for the production of clinical practice guidelines.

Semmes-Murphey Foundation is participating in The National Neurosurgery Quality and Outcomes Database (N2QOD), which will allow any U.S. neurosurgeon, practice group, or hospital system to contribute to and access national aggregate quality and outcomes data. The N2QOD is primarily designed to serve as a continuous national clinical registry for our specialty with the future aims of involving multi-specialty care. In order to better support the administration of this evolving effort, the AANS formed the NeuroPoint Alliance, Inc. (NPA), an independent, non-profit entity that will provide neurosurgeons with an internet-based data management platform for collecting, evaluating and improving upon neurosurgical outcomes. The NPA has partnered with Vanderbilt Institute of Medicine and Public Health (VIMPH) an experienced clinical research organization and leading administrator of clinical data registries, to manage the collection of standardized data across neurosurgical practices.

The primary purpose and design of this registry is to track the quality of surgical care for the most common neurosurgical procedures performed by neurosurgeons as well as provide practice groups and hospitals immediate infrastructure for analyzing and reporting the quality of their neurosurgical care, including risk-adjusted benchmarks (i.e. quality assessment and improvement).  N2QOD will serve as a national network of practicing neurosurgeons (and, where applicable, multidiscipline spine surgeons) with the primary aim of providing surgeons with a dynamic quality assessment and reporting infrastructure. The N2QOD will provide not only risk-adjusted benchmarks of surgical quality, but also risk-adjusted benchmarks of effectiveness and help define the value of care.

The project is intended to collect data only on the most common lumbar spine procedures and diagnoses. The multi-year goal of N2QOD is to grow to collect quality and outcomes data on all major conditions treated by neurosurgeons. In that respect, the quality registry is expected to expand to include the treatments for cervical spine disease, brain tumors, and cerebrovascular pathology among other neurosurgical disorders. The long term goal of N2QOD is to include non-operative treatments of these neurosurgery related diagnoses.