Optimizing nursing resources is a constant challenge. Faced with one of the largest nursing shortages in memory, your current staff is one of your organization’s most valuable assets. With Primaris conducting core measure abstraction, your nurses can work where you really need them and you can focus on making the necessary improvements.
Direct Costs

  • Salary of abstraction staff
  • Salaries of those designated to back-up abstraction during absences
  • Employee benefits (average cost is 28% of salary)
  • Time for conducting inter-rater reliability checks
  • Oversight/management time
  • Overhead (generally calculated at 35% or more of salary)
  • Office space, computer, printer, utilities, supplies
  • Administration (legal, human resources, information technology, etc.)
  • Required quarterly training on measure changes and updates
  • Validation failures that compromise future APU payments
  • 2008 CMS plan to pay hospitals according to performance


Indirect Considerations

  • What other roles could your abstraction staff be filling, such as case management, utilization review or performance improvement projects to increase rates?
  • What is the cost of other resources used to support core measure abstraction?
  • What is the level of fatigue/frustration for abstraction staff in trying to keep up with changes in core measure abstraction while completing all duties assigned to them?
  • Does this fatigue have a detrimental effect on accuracy and turnaround time?
  • What deadlines have you missed or almost missed as a result of competing priorities?
  • How would you continue abstraction if one of your staff terminated or needed extended leave time for illness, family or vacation? How long would it take to recruit and train a replacement?
  • When CMS and The Joint Commission add measures, will you have to recruit, hire and train more staff?
  • How are you ensuring abstraction is accurate and unbiased?


Primaris staff members have been collecting Core Measure data since 1999, when the Joint Commission engaged four volunteer states, including Missouri, in its Core Measure pilot program. We have trained hundreds of hospital staff members in Core Measure abstraction.