Home > Medicare > Legislation on Access to Physician Medicare Payment Data

Legislation on Access to Physician Medicare Payment Data

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) introduced the Strengthening Program Integrity and Accountability in Health Care Act of 2011 (S.454) that includes language requiring the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to make identifiable Medicare payment data for physicians available to the public by the end of 2012. Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas) is also planning to introduce legislation with potentially similar language.

Many physicians are concerned about anyone having quick and easy access to their Medicare earnings. There are obvious legal considerations and basic fears of potentially unsavory people knowing how much a person makes from Medicare.

This comes on the heels of HHS efforts to strengthen its Physician Compare website with additional Physician Quality Reporting Initiative (PQRI) and e-Prescribing Incentive Program data. Presumably, Physician Compare could be the vehicle to display a physician’s payment data as well.

S.454 also contains other provisions of interest, including language that would require HHS and the Federal Trade Commission to establish an information sharing program and “clearinghouse” for reports of beneficiary medical ID theft.

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Categories: Medicare
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