National Committee for Quality Assurance to Focus on Addressing Health Disparities, Dental Measures

New measures for health plan providers in 2023 put the focus on inclusivity and health equity.

The National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) has announced revised quality measure for health plans in the Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set (HEDIS) for the year 2023, according to a press release from the group. These updates will introduce race/ethnicity stratifications and member gender identity affirmations.

NCQA has added race and ethnicity stratifications to 8 HEDIS measures to more accurately collect data to improve transparency in care gaps and disparities. NCQA has also amended references to pregnancy by incorporating more inclusive language. This language will recognize and include transgender and gender non-conforming individuals.

Other HEDIS measures (including important Dental measures) introduced are:

  • Oral Evaluation Dental Services: This measure aims to assist plans in understanding if pediatric Medicaid members receive comprehensive or periodic oral evaluations.
  • Topical Fluoride for Children: This measure clarifies for members with pediatric Medicaid members, that 2 fluoride varnish applications will aid in the prevention of cavities.
  • Deprescribing of Benzodiazepines in Older Adults: This measure assesses Medicare members 67 years and older who were dispensed benzodiazepines and achieved a more than or equal 20% decrease in dosage. This measure will ensure the avoidance of withdrawal symptoms and illness in deprescribing.
  • Emergency Department Visits for Hypoglycemia in Older Adults with Diabetes: Because of the higher risk for falls and fractures due to hypoglycemia in older adults, this measure will monitor and measure risk for older patients with diabetes. This can help with injury prevention.
  • Social Need Screening and Intervention: This measure will assist health plans in identifying the needs of patients, including food, housing, and transportation, and connecting those patients to those needs.

HEDIS 2023 and its corresponding changes are available for review at