CMS (Finally) Makes Claim Data Public

December 7, 2011
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Posted in CMSHealthcare Policy & The MediaKnowledge & MedicineScience & Research

Posted in CMSHealthcare Policy & The MediaKnowledge & MedicineScience & Research

The federal government finally announces that it will open up its Medicare claims database to allow third party access (advocacy groups, insurers, hospitals, etc). This follows a few years of speculation on the part of pundits and legislators alike on what such a move could entail and how it would impact heatlhcare reform — in particular, enhancing quality parameters. The benefits of availability of such information gleaned from billing, requisitions, and payments will vary among groups seeking such data.

Though the data aggregate is invaluable for contructing tools for everything from clinical trials to arranging care delivery based upon demographics, there is always the specter of misrepresentation of that data. For years, many clinicians (including professional associations like the AMA) have lobbied against the release of such info on the gounds that internal reviews should be made before that info is released to the general public. End data may not always be reflected by the healthcare delivery means for many difficult-to-treat patients, for example.

Still, the move is a win for groups wanting to move beyond the formerly impenetrable wall imposed and maintained by physicians and physician groups in order to access that gold mine of clinical, financial, and parametric information. | LINK

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