The CMS Provider Data Catalog: A Tool for Quality Improvement

An overview of CMS’s Provider Data Catalog website and how home health agencies can use this website to further their quality programs.

The Provider Data Catalog (PDC) is a CMS website that serves providers, innovators, and other stakeholders who are interested in detailed CMS data. This site provides interactive and downloadable datasets related to quality data publicly reported on Care Compare.

In addition to the easily downloadable data, the website also makes these quality datasets available through an improved Application Programming Interface (API), allowing innovators in the field to easily access and analyze the CMS publicly reported data and make it useful for providers.

What can be found on the Provider Data Catalog?

PDC contains provider-specific resources via a “Topics” link, sorted by provider type, that can be found on the home page of PDC. The main page for home health providers has information sorted into two main categories: “About this topic” and “About this data.” Unique to just the Provider Data Catalog, this main provider page also contains important recent announcements related to health publicly reported measures and updates to Care Compare.

The “About this topic” supporting page on the Provider Data Catalog provides access to all the current quality datasets reflecting the data currently displayed on Care Compare, the data dictionary, information on how to use the government data, and archived quality data from past refreshes of Care Compare. The archived data has links and datasets that span publicly reported data going back to 2015.

The “About this data” section on the Provider Data Catalog provides more technical details about the data on Care Compare, including links related to using the data, detail on the Patient Quality of Care Star Rating, the Patient Experience of Care Star Rating, the current data collection periods, each publicly reported quality measure (including what they are and why they are important), and the process of care and the outcome of care quality measures. Additionally, the “About this data” section includes statistical and technical information for each of the quality measures.

How can Agencies use PDC to support Quality Improvement?

Quality improvement requires ongoing data collection and submission of quality measure data, as well as regular review of quality data to monitor progress and guide quality improvement education and strategies. Through the current datasets and archived datasets available on PDC, home health agencies can review quality data over an extended period of time. They can monitor their overall progress with individual goals and progress with their star ratings.

Information on PDC also allows agencies to compare their progress with quality measures at the state and national level. Home health agencies can take advantage of this data to identify measure progress and measure improvement goals used to drive education and their Quality Assurance and Performance Improvement (QAPI) programs.

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