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AMA Forms Alliance for Physician Data Reporting

July 16, 2012
by Gabriel Perna
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The American Medical Association (AMA) is working with 60 various organizations in supporting an effort that will aim to help physicians’ better use health insurer-provided data reports as tools to enhance the quality and value of patient care.As part of the effort, the AMA created the "Guidelines for Reporting Physician Data" with input from public and private health insurers, state and specialty medical societies, health standard organizations, and employer and consumer coalitions.

"Almost every public and private health insurer presents physicians with practice profile reports to support data-driven decision-making," AMA President Jeremy A. Lazarus, M.D., said in a statement. "This feedback has been ineffective since the complex reports vary from plan to plan and are difficult to read and interpret."

The new guidelines aim to provide a roadmap for improving the usefulness of physician data reports by encouraging greater format standardization, process transparency and level of detail. Among the organizations that support the use of the AMA's Guidelines for Reporting Physician Data include Cigna, Midwest Business Group on Health, National Committee on Quality Assurance and UnitedHealth Group.

"The organizations who have pledged to use the AMA guidelines recognize that providing physicians with ineffective or inaccurate practice data represents a missed opportunity," said Dr. Lazarus. "Encouraging industry-wide standardization of practice data reports will help physicians double-check the information and use accurate data as a tool to identify opportunities for practice improvement."

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