On June 30, 2014, CMS posted 2014 Sunshine Act/Open Payments data on its website. The 2014 financial data, which covered a full calendar year, included information on 11.41 million financial transactions reported by 1,444 applicable manufacturers and applicable group purchasing organizations. The reported payments went to 607,000 physicians and 1121 teaching hospitals. The total value of the transactions was $6.49 billion. The 2014 data included updated submissions of 2013 data that previously could not be verified.
CMS was able to verify that 98.8% of the submitted records contained accurate identifying information about the physician or teaching hospital named as a recipient. Last year, CMS chose to report de-identified data (i.e., no physician named in the reported transaction) if the identity of a physician recipient could not be confirmed. This year, CMS rejected submitted data if the recipient could not be verified and did not enter the rejected data into the Sunshine Act/Open Payments system. Reporting entities can resubmit the rejected data when they have properly identified the recipient.
Registered physicians and teaching hospitals reviewed nearly 30% of the total value of the 2014 data. Note that physicians who registered in the Sunshine Act system received reported payments with a median value of $3644, which was nearly 5 times more than the $747 median value of payments received by physicians who did not register.
As I expected, initial media response to publication of the data has been muted, unlike last year when the media focused a great deal of attention on the 2013 data. We likely will see articles after reporters and others have had time to review and analyze the posted data.
Here is a link to the Sunshine Act/Open Payments webpage in case you care to browse: http://www.cms.gov/openpayments/
I wish everyone a happy Fourth of July.