On April 2, 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that they would soon publicly release 2012 Medicare claims data.
Not earlier than April 9, CMS will “provide the public unprecedented access to information about the number and type of health care services that individual physicians and certain other health care professionals delivered in 2012, and the amount Medicare paid them for those services.” According to CMS the data contains information on “more than 880,000 health care professionals in all 50 states who collectively received $77 billion in payments in 2012 for services delivered to beneficiaries under the Medicare Part B Fee-For-Service program.” Physician identifiable information will be public, however, for Medicare beneficiary privacy reasons, CMS will redact all data in cases where it includes fewer than 11 beneficiaries.
The CMS announcement comes in response to a ruling from a district court in Florida that vacated an injunction (or prohibition) on the broad release of Medicare claims data. The injunction has been in effect since 1979. However, since 1979 media organizations have sought and received some of this data. Additionally, the Affordable Care Act allows qualified entities to receive Medicare claims data for purposes of creating, reviewing, and publishing performance reports about individual providers. This public release is expected to be far broader than previous releases of Medicare claims data.
ASA will keep you updated when this is information is posted and where it can be accessed.
Click here to read the full CMS blog post.
Click here to view the letter CMS sent to the AMA.