Statement on the release of Medicare reimbursement data

Monday, April 14, 2014 08:41 AM
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For immediate release: Monday, April 14, 2014
Attributable to John L. Bender, MD, FAAFP
President, Colorado Medical Society
Diplomate, American Board of Family Medicine
President and CEO, Miramont Family Medicine
Past President and Board, Colorado Academy of Family Physicians
Delegate, American Academy of Family Physicians

For Coloradans, the release of the first wave of Medicare data follows a systematic approach already adopted by our state to assist patients, payers, employers, physicians and other providers in assessing and comparing the value of their health care services.

We are fortunate that in 2010 the Colorado General Assembly passed a state law creating the “All Payer Claims Database.” This database is operated by a nonprofit organization in Denver, the Center for Improving Value in Health Care (CIVHC), which is staffed by experts in health care data analytics. CIVHC is already producing sophisticated reports on cost trends and their underlying causes. Only a few states anticipated this urgent need for transparency in measuring what we pay for and what we collectively get for those payments.

Sifting through mountains of raw payment information is useless at best and misleading at worst. The volume of services is less important than their outcomes, and the pricing less important than their relative value – do the treatments help, hurt or make no difference? This requires the kind of sophisticated analysis our homegrown data experts can translate in order to make the information meaningful and relevant to patients, physicians and other health care stakeholders.

We all need this data in an easy-to-understand form if we are to assure care is being delivered at the right time, place and price. Thankfully, Colorado is once again ahead of the curve.

Click here to download this statement as a PDF.

Posted in: Press Releases | Practice Evolution | Transparency


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