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Quality BY JOEY BERLIN


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Ballinger emergency physician Bradly Bundrant, MD, says Medicare data can be valuable in comparing quality measures for rural hospitals.


A wealth of information


CERITIFICATION PUTS UTHEALTH RESEARCHERS ON PATH TO STUDYING TEXAS MEDICARE CLAIMS DATA


I


t’s more than just a bunch of data — it’s an opportunity, and one that a University of Texas health data center had to go for. Even better, it’s given physicians a seat at the table.


The Center for Health Care Research Data at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston’s (UTHealth’s) School of Public Health is on the path to receiving Medicare claims information that could shed precious new light on cost, practitioners, and utilization across Texas — information such as where the illnesses are, where the needs are, and where the high-performing doctors are. In a state where some people go to their local emergency department more days than they don’t, Medicare claims data can be an illuminating treasure trove. Last June, the Center for Health Care Research Data announced it had


OK\XON u[_KVS ON OX^S^cv MO\^S MK^SYX P\YW ^RO -OX^O\] PY\ 7ONSMK\O 7ONSM- KSN =O\`SMO] -7= >RK^ MO\^S MK^SYX WOKX] S^ aSVV RK`O KMMO]] ^Y MVKSW] NK^K P\YW 7ONSMK\O :K\^] + , KXN . >RO MOX^O\ aSVV LO ^RO \]^ -7= MO\^S ON Y\QKXSdK^SYX ^Y PYM_] YX ^RK^ NK^K ]ZOMS MKVVc PY\ >ObK] Cecilia Ganduglia-Cazaban, MD, codirector of the center, says the infor- mation will offer a more comprehensive look at patient activity than is avail-


November 2017 TEXAS MEDICINE 47


“There’s a big gap in the South, and certainly in Texas. So we wanted to be the ones that would pick up that role.”


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