Interactive Public Reporting of National Fertility Clinic Success Rates

Project Name: Interactive Public Reporting of National Fertility Clinic Success Rates

Project Status: Proposed

Point of Contact: Jeani Chang

Center: National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion

Keywords: Data visualization, data display, surveillance system

Project Description: Through the National Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) Surveillance System (NASS), CDC collects data from all fertility clinics in the United States and calculates standardized success rates for each clinic. These data, presented annually in a report, give a potential ART user an idea of average chances of ART success. NASS is one of the surveillance systems within HHS that emphasizes consumer-oriented public reporting by providing ART information for consumers on clinic-specific ART procedures and outcomes.

Although CDC has been successful in meeting the federal mandate (1992 Fertility Clinic Success Rates and Certification Act) for reporting fertility clinic success rates data (www.cdc.gov/art), the information is not presented in a format that can be easily grasped by ART consumers or the general public. In addition, the field of ART is constantly changing, making public reporting of ART outcomes even more complex. It has also been suggested that publication of clinic-specific live birth rates may promote clinic competition and transfer of multiple embryos, leading to multiple births and associated morbidity and high healthcare costs. Recognizing this challenge, CDC worked with HHS Public Reporting Workgroup, HHS contractor NORC at the University of Chicago, and RESOLVE (the National Infertility Association) on developing concepts for a new interactive user-friendly web-based approach for displaying the ART fertility clinic success rates data. Concepts for this new approach include using data visualization tools and techniques to improve the ability and usability to absorb information in innovative and more constructive ways.

Potential impact of project: The proposed project would fund a web design contractor (Northrup Grumman) to implement concepts for the collaboratively-developed prototype on CDC’s website. If successful, this project has the potential to increase the availability and usability of ART surveillance data to enable consumers to interact directly with the reported data and to make informed choices based on current data. The new data display will allow consumers to search for clinics within a certain locale and interactively assess each clinic’s success rates as compared to that of the national data. Most importantly, the new platform will emphasize the measure of ART success that promotes healthy singletons as the optimal outcome. Re-directing attention from live-birth rates to healthy singletons following ART will enhance maternal and child health outcomes and reduce healthcare costs associated with ART.

Expected results: Once data from NASS are displayed in a user-friendly format based on the principles of effective public reporting, other national surveillance systems may consider the applicability of such an interactive system for their data to promote public use. This innovative presentation of fertility clinic success rates data will also allow CDC to reduce expenditures by reducing or eliminating the need to print hard copies of the approximately 600-page ART Fertility Clinic Success Rates Report.

For more information about this project, please contact the CHIIC at chiic@cdc.gov or Brian Lee at brian.lee@cdc.hhs.gov.

Page last reviewed: February 15, 2019
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