CMS - Launches Care Compare for Patients Making Important Health Care Decisions

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By Jennifer Elder posted 7 days ago

  

On September 3, under the leadership of President Trump, CMS launched Care Compare, a streamlined redesign of eight existing CMS health care compare tools available on Medicare.gov. Care Compare provides a single user-friendly interface that patients and caregivers can use to make informed decisions about health care based on cost, quality of care, volume of services, and other data. With just one click, patients can find information that is easy to understand about doctors, hospitals, nursing homes, and other health care services instead of searching through multiple tools.

“President Trump has long recognized that a free and vibrant health care market is one in which patients have what they need to make informed decisions based on cost and quality,” said CMS Administrator Seema Verma. “By aggregating all eight of CMS’ quality tools into a single interface, patients can easily research different providers and facilities before they entrust themselves to their care. Today’s launch of Care Compare is the next step in fulfilling our eMedicare promise. Our Administration is committed to ensuring our tools are robust and beneficial to patients.”

Currently, someone who is planning to have bypass surgery would need to visit Hospital Compare, Nursing Home Compare, and Home Health Compare individually to research providers for the different phases of their surgery and rehabilitation. Now, those patients can start their search at Care Compare to find and compare providers that meet their health care needs that includes information about quality measures presented similarly and clearly across all provider types and care settings.

Patients will also find helpful hints and guides throughout Care Compare. While the measures and data used for Care Compare have not changed, the way information is displayed is now different. During a transition period, consumers and other stakeholders will be able to use the original eight compare tools while CMS continues to gather feedback and considers additional improvements to the tool. As new information about quality and cost are added to the compare tools, Care Compare will be updated to reflect that information.

In conjunction with the launch of Care Compare, additional improvements have been made to other CMS data tools to help Medicare beneficiaries compare costs:

  • Procedure Price Look Up tool now includes physician fees in addition to facility fees, offering people with Medicare a more accurate prediction of the true out-of-pocket costs
  • Provider Data Catalog better serves innovators and stakeholders who are interested in detailed CMS data and use interactive and downloadable datasets like those currently available on data.Medicare.gov.

See the full text of this excerpted CMS Press Release (issued September 3).

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