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Change in Seasons Offers Fresh Perspectives

I was shocked this week to see a few leaves turning signaling the first signs of fall, especially only a few short days following 90-plus degree weather. This time of year always seems to sneak up too quickly with school back in session, cooler nights and the hours of daylight diminishing. At the same time, the crisp night air and brisk mornings are a welcome change to the summer heat and I’m reminded again of how privileged I am to live in Colorado where with each change in season we’re surrounded by a new, unique perspective.

Seeing things in a new light enables us to view our world differently and can result in creative new approaches to the status quo. I see the evolution of data in the Colorado All Payer Claims Database in a similar vein as it opens up new perspectives by highlighting opportunities we might not have thought of or identified before.

In sync with the changing season, we’re planning to release new public population based data on the CO APCD website this fall that’s intended to help Colorado identify ways to make positive changes in cost, quality of care and health in the years to come. Plans for expanding specific procedure median costs for specific providers will be communicated later this year. The site currently contains a wealth of knowledge related to the cost of care in Colorado, utilization of services, facility-specific pricing and more. In fact, Colorado recently was placed in the top three states in the nation according to the State Price Transparency report, in large part due to the data available on the website. However, in our commitment to continue to advance the value of the data, new population-based information of importance to policy-makers, communities and other stakeholders will also be available soon:

  • Medicare (2009-2011)
  • Medicaid, and 20 largest commercial payers (2013 claims added)
  • Observation Stays
  • Chronic Conditions
    • Hypertension Prevalence
    • Depression Prevalence
  • Preventive Care Measures
    • Breast Cancer Screening
    • Cervical Cancer Screening
    • Colorectal Cancer Screening
    • Diabetes Care LDL-C Testing
  • Search options by Health Statistics Regions

Last year was a big year for CIVHC and the APCD with advancements in Healthy Transitions Colorado, onboarding Medicare data for the first time, publicizing hospital prices for procedures, and more. Check out our infographic summarizing our biggest accomplishments from our last fiscal year to see what we’re most proud of. We took time to celebrate milestones achieved, but are even more excited about what we’re working towards this year.

The intention of this new fall release, as with every update to the site, is to expand the availability and usefulness of the data so it’s actionable and can be used locally to inform, drive, and track change. We’re simultaneously ramping up efforts and have significantly increased staff capacity to more readily refresh the website, including adding additional service-level price information to expand consumer shopping options. We are excited as well about our plans for 2016 as we continue to expand the availability, usefulness and overall value of the data.

We look forward to seeing how the new data will be used across the state for improvement. We’d love for you to let us know how you’ve used the information currently on the website, and, once released, how the new information will benefit your work. Similarly, if there are ways we can improve what’s available, we’d love to hear your ideas and suggestions. Feel free to reach out to me directly or contact with your feedback, and happy (almost) fall!

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