PHRs will automatically contain Medicare data in CMS pilot program

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is undertaking a third pilot program to test the use of online personal health records by Medicare beneficiaries. In the new pilot, CMS will populate commercial PHRs with Medicare claims data.

The agency plans to select as many as four commercial PHR vendors and give users a choice. As in the other tests, CMS will be examining what works and what doesn’t as it tries to encourage Medicare beneficiaries to use PHRs.

The one-year pilot, which begins Jan. 2, will include Medicare recipients in only Utah and Arizona. The PHR vendors will partner with Noridian Administrative Services, the CMS contractor that processes claims data for those two states.

Nordian will be populating the PHRs with as much as two years’ worth of claims data.

Noridian issued a request for proposals today. Would-be suppliers of PHRs for the project must notify Noridian by Aug. 18, and the winning vendors will be announced Oct. 20, according to a schedule in the RFP.

CMS does not intend to pay the vendors for participating, according to the RFP, and the vendors will not be under contract to CMS.

The RFP calls for vendors to provide a wide array of features and services, such as populating the PHR with prescriptions and lab results during the pilot, importing data from devices such as blood pressure monitors and scales, enabling users to view the data in multiple ways, and allowing them to order prescription refills.

The features are not mandatory, but CMS will select vendors that offer more features than their competitors do, the RFP states. It requires compliance with health IT standards adopted by the Health and Human Services Department and assurances of privacy and security protections.

“This pilot is designed to evaluate how well PHRs meet the needs of our beneficiaries and whether PHRs can improve health outcomes and lower costs,” CMS Acting Administrator Kerry Weems said in a statement.

About the Author

Nancy Ferris is senior editor of Government Health IT.

Featured

  • Cybersecurity

    DHS floats 'collective defense' model for cybersecurity

    Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen wants her department to have a more direct role in defending the private sector and critical infrastructure entities from cyberthreats.

  • Defense
    Defense Secretary James Mattis testifies at an April 12 hearing of the House Armed Services Committee.

    Mattis: Cloud deal not tailored for Amazon

    On Capitol Hill, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis sought to quell "rumors" that the Pentagon's planned single-award cloud acquisition was designed with Amazon Web Services in mind.

  • Census
    shutterstock image

    2020 Census to include citizenship question

    The Department of Commerce is breaking with recent practice and restoring a question about respondent citizenship last used in 1950, despite being urged not to by former Census directors and outside experts.

Stay Connected

FCW Update

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.