CMS plans to create a database with identifiable information on ACO patients and providers

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services plans to create a database containing identifiable information on participating Medicare patients, providers and suppliers participating in an ACO, as well as and contact people for an ACO, according to a CMS press release.

According to the press release, the information in the database, called the System of Records, will be used to support the regulatory, reimbursement and policy functions of shared savings programs and to combat fraud, waste and abuse in certain health benefits programs.  Information will be protected in accordance with the Patient Privacy Act, and will be accessible to trained personnel on a “need to know” basis. 

(Sources: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, http://www.ofr.gov, September 2011; The Advisory Board Daily Briefing, http://advisory.com, September 22, 2011; Health Data Management, http://www.healthdatamanagement.com, September 15, 2011)