CMS Releases Voluntary Sample Hospital Price Transparency Format Guidelines

On Monday, CMS announced the availability of a standardized machine-readable file format that hospitals can elect to use in complying with the price transparency final rule.  The sample formats, presented in .CSV and .JSON, are accompanied by a data dictionary.  CMS notes that the use of these sample formats are voluntary.  It’s also important to note that the samples contain fields that are not currently required under the hospital price transparency rule.  The data dictionary attempts to display fields that are required in the rule by listing a “Requirement” reference from the rule’s language.  One such field, “Contracting Method”, asks hospitals to “Select the value that most closely represents the contracting method for the payer-specific negotiated charge associated with the item or service.”  For information that doesn’t align with the allowed values, hospitals can use an “Other” type.  These additional fields in the sample formats were presumably created to enhance the utility of disclosed data.  The formats were created with input from a panel that was convened by a CMS contractor.

The link to the CMS voluntary sample file formats and data dictionary can be found here:

Cleverley + Associates already provides services for hospitals to comply with the machine readable and consumer shoppable disclosure requirements.  As an extension of those services, we will be creating a format option for clients to display under the new CMS voluntary sample format structure, if desired.  For more information on price transparency, please contact us!

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