The concept of a PSO has its origins in the national Patient Safety and Quality Act of 2005 and the corresponding regulations issued by Department of Health and Human Services.
A PSO is an organization developed to help physicians and other health care providers to share and analyze clinical outcomes and data associated with patient safety in a HIPAA-compliant manner, protected from legal discovery, as part of a quality improvement initiative.
This infrastructure, along with certain other procedural safeguards such as business associate agreements between the SNIS PSO and M2S, allows the collection of clinical data associated for quality improvement purposes without requiring individual patient consent or prior approval from an Institutional Review Board (IRB).
In addition, the SNIS PSO benchmarking gives institutions the ability to create registry-based quality initiatives and national and module comparisons. Benchmarking facilitates comparisons of device effectiveness and delivers a comprehensive quality improvement mechanism for NVQI-QOD participants.