CMS Releases Physician Payment Data
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has released data on the health care services delivered by individual physicians in 2013 and how much Medicare paid for these services. (Data is also available in Excel by provider last name here.) Medicare Part B Fee-For-Service data are available on more than 950,000 health care professionals across all 50 states, according to CMS’s fact sheet. While the payment data lacks risk adjustment or description of the context, it is important to realize that patients may view these data as an opportunity to raise questions about the care they receive.
The College encourages physicians to engage with patients about their care and provide additional perspective so that they may gain a fuller understanding of the context in which Medicare payments are made. This is also an opportunity to educate patients about clinical practice guidelines and appropriate use criteria that contribute to careful decision-making.
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