Implementing an effective quality measurement system is paramount in improving care and lowering costs in the dual eligible population, according to a new stakeholder report.

Measures for the diagnosis and treatment of depression, screenings for fall risk, and widespread use of patient surveys are some of the specific quality measures that the Measure Applications Partnership recommended in a report sent to the Department of Health and Human Services.

In the report, MAP laid out a strategy for implementing quality measures to help coordinate the often fragmented care dual eligibles — individuals who qualify for both Medicare and Medicaid — receive. The report spells out a core set of 26 measures, along with a “starter” set of seven measures that can be implemented more quickly.

Many dual eligibles often end up in nursing homes as a result of chronic illnesses. Spending for dual eligibles reached $265.7 billion in 2007, according to the MAP report.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recently have announced the creation of pilot and demonstration projects to help coordinate post-acute care for this vulnerable population.

Click here to read the full report.