Medical database agreement to enhance ACG risk adjustment system

Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health have signed a multi-year agreement with PharMetrics, Inc., of Watertown, Mass., to acquire data from the company's proprietary Anonymous Patient-Centric Database. The database, which includes health care information from over 50 million Americans, is the largest and most complete of its kind. The information will help researchers enhance the Adjusted Clinical Groups Case-Mix System (ACG System), which allows health care providers, insurers and health maintenance organizations to manage funds more efficiently and effectively.

Developed by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School Public Health, the ACG System is a computer-based program that assesses the health of people enrolled in a given health plan. The plans, in turn, use the ACG System to help predict the need for their future health care services. Adjusted Clinical Groups (ACGs) are a series of mutually exclusive, health-status categories that are defined by morbidity, age and gender. They are based on the premise that the level of resources necessary for delivering appropriate health care to a population is correlated to the illness burden of that population. ACGs are used to assess provider performance, identify future high-cost cases and develop innovative plan payment and financial risk-sharing arrangements by more than 175 healthcare organizations worldwide. "With our ability to access PharMetrics' anonymous patient-centric data, we are able to make a more significant contribution toward improving the quality, as well as efficiency, of care being delivered by payors that depend on our ACG System across the country. The PharMetrics Database is the ideal resource for our ACG research and development efforts, not only because of the robustness of its data, but also because of its exemplary data quality assurance process," said David Bodycombe, ScD, an ACG System team leader and scientist at the Bloomberg School of Public Health.


Contact: Tim Parsons
Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health

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