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CHIME Raises Concerns on ACO Data Sharing

John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media, May 11, 2011

The ability of patients in accountable care organizations to restrict access to their personal health information is one of several hurdles that could hinder the success of the new healthcare delivery models, the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives said this week.

In a letter Tuesday to Donald Berwick, MD, administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, CHIME called for a re-examination of several sections of the proposed rules that it said would create significant pressures on ACOs.

“If beneficiary claims data are withheld, the ACO’s ability to improve individual beneficiary health, as well as achieve the desired shared savings, could be compromised,” CHIME said in the letter, its public comments on the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for governing ACOs.

“We believe that allowing ACO patients to opt out of data sharing, while maintaining their ability to see the primary care physician participating in an ACO, contraindicates efforts to provide accountable care.”

CHIME told CMS that patients who want to opt out of sharing claims data should be required to see a primary care physician not affiliated with an ACO, or that healthcare expenditures for these patients should not be counted against an ACO under shared savings payments.

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