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Open Payments database available for physician review in April



January 12, 2015
Area(s) of Interest: Payor Issues and Reimbursement 

<p>The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service (CMS) announced last week that it will make the Open Payments database available to physicians for their review of payments made to them by drug and medical device companies. The Open Payments database is a part of the Physician Payments Sunshine Act, a provision of the Affordable Care Act.</p>
<p>Drug and medical device manufacturers are required to report their financial interactions with licensed physicians &ndash; including consulting fees, travel reimbursements, research grants and other gifts. Any payments, ownership interests and other &ldquo;transfers of value&rdquo; will be reported to CMS for publication in the online database.</p>
<p>Last year&rsquo;s inaugural launch of the Open Payments program was plagued with data inaccuracies and a less-than-user-friendly registration and review process. This year, medical device and drug manufacturers will have until March 31 to submit 2014 financial data. According to CMS, the 2014 payment data and updates to 2013 data will be published in June.</p>
<p>If you haven&rsquo;t already registered for the Open Payments portal, do it now so you will have access to review and dispute any incorrect data this spring. Physicians should be aware that there is a two-step registration process for the Open Payments program. The first step requires physicians to register at the <a href="https://portal.cms.gov/wps/portal/unauthportal/home/">CMS Enterprise Portal</a>, a step many physicians may have already completed as the gateway enables access to a number of other CMS programs. Step two is to register in <a href="http://www.cms.gov/openpayments/index.html">CMS&rsquo; Open Payments system</a>.</p>
<p>More information on the Sunshine Act is available in the American Medical Association's online <a href="http://www.ama-assn.org/ama/pub/advocacy/topics/sunshine-act-and-physician-financial-transparency-reports.page">Physician Sunshine Act Tool Kit</a>, which provides a variety of resources to help physicians navigate the Sunshine Act changes, including a free webinar, a list of important dates, answers to frequently asked questions, information about how to challenge incorrect reports and ways to be more transparent with patients about the physician's interactions with the pharmaceutical and medical device industries.</p>

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