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System Level Measures Framework

Released on 13 May 2016, updated on 1 May 2017

System Level Measures (SLMs) are high level aspirational goals for the health system that align with the five strategic themes of the New Zealand Health Strategy and other national strategic priorities such as Better Public Services targets.  They have a focus on children, youth and vulnerable populations.  SLMs are part of the DHB annual planning process and provide an opportunity for DHBs to work with their primary, secondary and community care providers to improve health outcomes of their local population.   They promote better understanding and use of health information, engagement with people in the design and delivery of health services and better health investment in models of care based on local population needs.

The framework relies on the concept of SLMs, which are:

  • set nationally
  • reflect integration of health services
  • highlight equity gaps
  • connect to contributory measures.

Contributory measures.

  • Contribute to achievement of SLMs.
  • Are front line service level measurements of health processes or activity – tangible and clinically meaningful.
  • Align with local quality improvement.

The Ministry of Health worked closely with the sector to co-develop the SLMs. They are:

  • Ambulatory Sensitive Hospitalisation (ASH) rates per 100,000 for 0–4 year olds (ie, keeping children out of hospital)
  • Acute hospital bed days per capita (ie, using health resources effectively)
  • Patient experience of care (ie, person-centred care)
  • Amenable mortality rates (ie, prevention and early detection)
  • Proportion of babies who live in a smoke-free household at six weeks post natal (ie, healthy start) - further details to come in February 2017.
  • Youth System Level Measure (ie, youth are healthy, safe and supported) - further details to come in February 2017.

Implementation of the SLMs continues in 2017/18.  The DHB Annual Plan Guidance has been update to reflect the additional detail required in the 2017/18 Improvement Plans.

This section includes detailed guidance to develop the Improvement Plans, the Guide to using the SLMs Framework, trend data for the SLMs and links to the Measures Library and communications to the sector.

System Level Measures Reporting Template

The purpose of this reporting template is to ensure consistency of reporting by DHBs and can be found at the following link:

System Level Measures Annual Plan Guidance 2017/18

The purpose of this guidance is to support the development of the Improvement Plan.

Latest Communications

Link to key updates and communication to the sector on the System Level Measures framework.

Measures Library

The Library includes definitions for System Level and contributory measures and provides an online interactive space for the sector to collaborate. 

The Guide to using the System Level Measures Framework

This guide explains the conncept of System Level and contributory measures and how these can be selected and used to drive quality improvement at a local level.

Minister’s Letter to DHB Chief Executives

The Minister wrote to the DHB Chief Executives in March 2016 announcing the SLMs and his expectations of DHBs.

Alliance Leadership Team (ALT) Charter

This Charter outlines the key principles and rules of engagement for alliance leadership teams.

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