Quality Improvement Awards

To further its commitment to improve the overall quality, efficiency, and value of health care services for the more than 27 million patients served at health centers, HRSA provides Quality Improvement Awards (QIA). These awards recognize the highest performing health centers nationwide as well as those health centers that have made significant quality improvement gains from the previous year.

QIA support HRSA’s strategic goal to improve access to quality health care and directly supports the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service’s goal of moving towards a value-based payment system by improving the quality, efficiency, and overall value of primary health care delivered by health centers.

In FY 2018, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced $125 million in Quality Improvement Awards to 1,352 community health centers across all U.S. states, territories and the District of Columbia. Health centers will use these funds to build upon their 2017 achievements to continue to improve quality, efficiency, and the value of health care delivery in the communities they serve.

This year’s QIA recognized achievements in the following categories:

  • Improving Quality of Care Awards recognized health centers that improved quality of care in four subcategories:
    • National Quality Leaders exceeded national clinical quality benchmarks (including Healthy People 2020 goals) for chronic disease management, preventive care, or perinatal/prenatal care.
    • Health Center Quality Leaders achieved the best overall clinical performance among all health centers and placed in the top 30% of the adjusted quartile rankings for clinical quality measures (CQMs).
    • Clinical Quality Improvers made at least a 10% improvement in one or more CQMs between 2016 and 2017.
    • Electronic Health Record (EHR) Reporters employed EHRs to report on all CQM data for all of the health center’s patients.
  • Enhancing Access to Care Awards recognized health centers that increased the total number of patients served and the number of patients receiving comprehensive services between 2016 and 2017.
  • Delivering High Value Care Awards recognized health centers that improved the delivery of cost efficient care as compared with the national average while also increasing quality of care and improving patient access to comprehensive services.
  • Addressing Health Disparities Awards recognized health centers that met, exceeded, or made at least a 10% improvement toward Healthy People 2020 goals across different racial/ethnic groups.
  • Advancing Health Information Technology (HIT) for Quality Awards recognized health centers that utilized HIT systems to increase access to care and advance quality of care.
  • Health centers with patient-centered medical home (PCMH) recognition in one or more delivery site received Achieving Patient-Centered Medical Home Recognition.

Quality Improvement Badges and Certificates

HRSA also recognizes achievements in quality improvement with:

  • badges on a health center’s UDS data page on the BPHC website and
  • certificates, which are mailed to select award recipients that have the option to display them in their health centers.
Award Category Badge Certificate
Improving Quality of Care National Quality Leaders NQL badge NQL Certificate Template
Health Center Quality Leaders HCQL badge HCQL Certificate Template
Enhancing Access to Care Enhancing access to care badge N/A
Delivering High Value Care Values Badge N/A
Addressing Health Disparities Health Disparities Badge N/A
Advancing HIT for Quality HIT Badge N/A
Achieving PCMH Recognition PCMH Badge N/A

Technical Assistance Resources

Fiscal Year 2018 Quality Improvement Awards (QIAs) Technical Assistance Webinar
September 13, 2018
Presentation (PDF – 1 MB) | On Demand Webinar Recording
Detailed information on the purpose and impact of the QIAs, eligibility, and award criteria summary of the FY 2018 awards.



Contact Us

For additional information, please contact the QIA Team at BPHCQI@hrsa.gov.