Background: In the Netherlands, health care is regulated by the Health and Youth Care Inspectorate. Forty-six indicators are used to prioritize supervision of psychiatric hospitals. The objective of this study is to define a smaller set of weighted indicators which reflects a consensus among inspectors about which aspects are most important for risk assessment. Methods: The set of 46 indicators, complemented with missing information, was reduced to six indicators by means of interviews, group discussions and ranking among the inspectors. These indicators were used as attributes in a discrete choice experiment (DCE) to define their weights. Results: Twenty-six inspectors defined the top four indicators suitable for the risk assessment of psychiatric hospitals. These are: The policy on prevention of compulsory treatment; the policy on dysfunctional professionals; the quality of internal research after a serious incident; and the implementation of multidisciplinary guidelines on suicidal behaviour. These indicators share the same importance with regard to risk assessment. The screening of somatic symptoms and the policy on integrated care are important indicators too, but less relevant. Conclusion: Through a DCE, we reduced the amount of information for risk assessment of psychiatric hospitals to six weighted indicators. Inspectors can use these indicators to prioritize their inspections.

Discrete choice experiment, Health care regulatory agencies, Indicators, Mental health care, Quality and safety, Risk assessment, Risk-based supervision,
BMC Health Services Research
Erasmus University Rotterdam

Van Dijk, P. (Pieter), Schellings, R, Essers, B.A.B, Kessels, A, Leistikow, I.P, & Zeegers, M.P.A. (2020). A discrete choice experiment to identify the most efficient quality indicators for the supervision of psychiatric hospitals. BMC Health Services Research, 20(1). doi:10.1186/s12913-020-4993-1