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Resources Are a Consistent Challenge APCDs Face: What Congress Can Do

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Mr. Boates is an insightful Project Associate with experience managing various public health groups and initiatives. He sees Public Health as an integral part of healthcare and as a critical mechanism for lowering healthcare spending.

The Senate’s recently asked stakeholders for feedback. This is the fourth in a brief series of posts sharing Freedman HealthCare’s recommendations to maximize the opportunity of APCDs and alleviate barriers to the broad sharing of actionable health care data. This post focuses on how Congress could support APCDs in securing necessary resources.

FHC works closely with states to design, implement, and support their APCD, and with this experience comes the understanding that most states struggle to fund these programs at some point within their existence.

The annual cost of securely collecting, storing and analyzing data in a small to mid-sized state ranges between $1.5 and $3 million per year, less than 0.01%1 of any state’s annual total cost of healthcare for its residents. Even with APCDs accounting for such small percent of a state’s overall healthcare budget, many rely on federal grants to begin or expand upon their systems.

We recommended Congress continue to support these efforts with new programs that allow APCDs to sustain and expand on work to date. With sustained federal funding, states will continue to build and support their APCDs, all while strengthening their ability to understand and share information on healthcare use and costs.

You can read the full FHC letter here.

1 Freedman, J, Green, L, Landon, B,: “All-Payer Claims Databases – Uses and Expanded Prospects after Gobeille,” New England Journal of Medicine, December 8, 2016,N Engl J Med 2016; 375:2215-2217 DOI: 10.1056/NEJMp1613276, accessed March 23, 2018 at http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp1613276,
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