Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Home and Community Based Services Outcome Measurement (RRTC-OM)

Evaluates measures of the quality of life experienced by people with disabilities as a result of receiving services and supports. Past measures tended to focus on money spent on services for persons with disabilities, staffing ratios, and the movement of people from institutions to the community. But increasingly, federal and state policymakers speak of the importance of demonstrating the effectiveness ("outcomes") of public investments in services for persons with disabilities and these officials want information about outcomes that are measured in a consistent and accurate manner nationwide.

The center will start by looking at the framework on Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) outcome measurement for people with disabilities that was drafted by the National Quality Forum. Center staff will see whether that framework captures the perspectives of a wide variety of stakeholders, including people with different types of disabilities who are of different ages and from different cultural groups, as well as their family members, service providers, and policymakers. RRTC-OM will then recommend modifications to ensure the framework reflects which service outcomes matter most to people with disabilities. Five subsequent RRTC-OM studies will identify gaps in measurement areas and best practices in HCBS outcome measurement, refine and develop measures, determine the reliability and validity of measures, and study factors (e.g., age, gender, residential setting) that need to be considered in interpreting results.

Ultimately, the work of the RRTC-OM will result in a set of recommended measures and procedures that can be used for collecting data on whether the HCBS-funded programs do what they are intended to do in supporting quality-of-life outcomes for individuals with physical, intellectual, and developmental disabilities; individuals with traumatic brain injury; and adults with age-related disabilities.

RRTC-OM is a center within ICI.