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  • Washington Highlights

    AAMC Submits Letter to CMS on Research Data Request and Access Policies


    Gayle Lee, Director, Physician Payment & Quality
    For Media Inquiries

    In an April 16 letter (PDF) to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) administrator, the AAMC expressed significant concerns with changes proposed to the Research Data Request and Access Policies for research identifiable files. Due to growing data security concerns and an increase in data breaches across the health care ecosystem, the CMS decided to discontinue the delivery of physical data in support of external research projects and instead require researchers to use the Chronic Conditions Warehouse Virtual Research Data Center to conduct all research using CMS research identifiable file data. 

    “This policy, especially related to the discontinuation of physical data extracts to support external projects, would significantly jeopardize future research focused on access to high quality, evidence-based, cost-effective, equitable care,” the AAMC stated in its letter. “While we appreciate CMS’s extension of its RFI comment deadline and delay in implementation, we ask that CMS withdraw these policies and instead work with the research community to develop an alternative approach to enable equitable, affordable access to CMS data while addressing concerns regarding data security.” 

    The CMS will continue to accept feedback from invested parties until May 15 in response to its updated request for information (PDF) regarding the implementation of this policy change.