The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is encouraging doctors to register for the Open Payment system after the first of the year as part of the new Physician Payments/Sunshine Act. The system is not yet online, but should be ready in the first quarter of 2014.
The purpose of the Sunshine Act is to create greater transparency around the financial relationships of pharmaceutical companies, health care device and supply manufacturers, physicians and teaching hospitals. Since earlier this year, pharmaceutical companies as well as manufacturers of medical devices or other medical supplies have been required to report to CMS any payments or transfers of value they make to physicians or teaching hospitals.
CMS is in the process of compiling all this information into a searchable and downloadable website format, accessible to the public. They anticipate the site will go live in Fall 2014.
Doctors are encouraged to register with Open Payments so they may track what is being reported about them and give them the opportunity to review the information and correct any mistakes. The physician must register him or herself initially, but can then designate a surrogate who can track the information for them going forward.
To learn more about the Open Payment system and how it will impact you, visit the CMS Open Payment website, which has numerous resources, background and webinars on the Act.
To view the most recent information release from CMS, click here.