Buried Treasure: Freeing California Data to Improve Health Care

Jonah P. B. Frohlich and Susan R. Ingargiola, Manatt Health Solutions

Mining public data is challenging but can increase quality and lower costs by supporting evidence-based health care.

May 2012

Patients, care providers, payers, and policymakers all seek to make evidence-based, data-driven health care decisions. While various state agencies release health care claims data for research and analysis, a strong argument can be made for making valuable state health-related data available for broader use.

This issue brief highlights federal and state efforts to "free the data" and outlines how California would benefit.

Among the highlights of how California can free its health care data:

  • Make health care claims data more accessible for research
  • Make health care claims data more accessible for demonstration programs
  • Create an all-payer claims database (APCD) to support new health insurance risk-adjustment programs
  • Create a robust, publicly available health care data portal
  • Support linked data and application programming interfaces (APIs) to enable better access to and use of data

The full issue brief is available under Document Downloads.