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AMA Statement on Newly Released Open Payments Data

For immediate release:
Jun 30, 2016
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"The American Medical Association (AMA) remains committed to transparency and the availability of information for patients to make informed decisions about their medical care. To accomplish this goal, Open Payments data released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services must be valid, reliable, and complete."

"While we appreciate the efforts of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to verify the data submitted by industry, continued data errors and registration challenges during the previous two years have thwarted many physicians from participating in the review and validation process. The integrity goals of the Open Payments database will not be met as long as physician review is obstructed by a registration procedure that is confusing, time consuming, and overly burdensome."

"Patients deserve to have access to accurate information. Publishing inaccurate data leads to misinterpretations, harms reputations and undermines the trust that patients have in their physicians. It can also discourage research and care delivery improvements that benefit patients."

"The AMA strongly opposes inappropriate, unethical interactions between physicians and industry.  However, not all interactions are unethical or inappropriate. There are relationships that can help drive innovation in patient care and provide significant resources for professional medical education that ultimately benefits patients."

"We look forward to continuing our working with CMS to improve the Open Payments system to ensure the data is presented in an accurate and informative way to help patients understand and interpret the information correctly."

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Editor's Note: The AMA released a guide to media reporting on the Open Payments data, which is accessible here.

Media Contact: 
AMA Media & Editorial
(312) 464-4430
[email protected]

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