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Aug 24 -- The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) invites comments by October 23, 2023 regarding the extension of the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (CAHPS) Health Plan Survey Database.

The CAHPS Health Plan Database consists of data from the AHRQ CAHPS Health Plan Survey. Health plans in the U.S. are asked to voluntarily submit data from the survey to AHRQ, through its contractor, Westat. The CAHPS Health Plan Database was developed by AHRQ in 1998 in response to requests from health plans, purchasers, and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to provide comparative data to support public reporting of health plan ratings, health plan accreditation and quality improvement.

This research has the following goals:

(1) To maintain the CAHPS Health Plan Database using data from AHRQ's standardized CAHPS Health Plan Survey to provide results to health care purchasers, consumers, regulators and policy makers across the country.
(2) To offer several products and services, including aggregated results presented through an Online Reporting System, summary chartbooks, custom analyses, and data for research purposes.
(3) To provide data for AHRQ's annual National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report.
(4) To provide state-level data to CMS for public reporting on Medicaid.gov and Data.Medicaid.gov that does not display the name of the health plans.

Survey data from the CAHPS Health Plan Database is used to produce four types of products:

(1) An annual chartbook available to the public on the CAHPS Database website (https://www.ahrq.gov/​sites/​default/​files/​wysiwyg/​cahps/​cahps-database/​2022-hp-chartbook.pdf));
(2) individual participant reports that are confidential and customized for each participating organization (e.g., health plan, Medicaid agency) that submits their data;
(3) a research database available to researchers wanting to conduct additional analyses; and
(4) data tables provided to AHRQ for inclusion in the National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Reports.

This study is being conducted by AHRQ through its contractor, Westat.
To achieve the goals of this project the following activities and data collections will be implemented:

-- Registration Form—The point-of-contact (POC), often the sponsor from Medicaid agencies and health plans, completes a number of data submission steps and forms, beginning with the completion of the online registration form. The purpose of this form is to collect basic contact information about the organization and initiate the registration process.
-- Health Plan Information Form—The purpose of this form, completed by the participating sponsor organization, is to collect background characteristics of the health plan.
-- Data Use Agreement—The purpose of the data use agreement, completed by the participating sponsor organization, is to state how data submitted by health plans will be used and provide confidentiality assurances.
-- Data Files Submission—POCs upload their data file using the Health Plan data file specifications to ensure that users submit standardized and consistent data in the way variables are named, coded, and formatted.

CAHPS: https://www.ahrq.gov/cahps/index.html
FRN: https://www.federalregister.gov/d/2023-18221

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