A New Manual for States Interested in Developing APCDs Aims for Greater Healthcare Price Transparency APCDCouncilReport

The APCD Council, with support from the Gary and Mary West Health Policy Center, has developed a manual for states interested in developing all-payer claims databases (APCDs). The manual, which provides an overview of APCD implementations across the country, offers a valuable resource for other states interested in filling critical information gaps, improving healthcare price and quality transparency initiatives, and providing actionable information
for stakeholders. 

The manual includes a detailed review of data collection, aggregation, and analysis standards commonly involved in establishing an APCD. It also offers a framework outlining five major aspects of APCD development: (1) engagement, (2) governance, (3) funding, (4) technical build, and (5) analysis and application development. Critical components of each area include:

  • Engagement: carefully defining the purpose and rationale behind creating an APCD – why it is needed, what it is seeking to accomplish, etc. – through an intensive stakeholder engagement process 
  • Governance: creating a comprehensive governance structure, specific to each state’s intended use of data, political environment, and oversight plan, which can effectively provide a clear set of legislation, rules, regulations, and policies to drive overall functionality 
  • Funding: keeping in mind all aspects of the APCD system’s development and operation phases and leveraging diversifying revenue sources to safeguard long-term sustainability
  • Technical Build: strategically defining the collected data elements (often guided by vendors) to ensure uniform data submissions and formats across payers which, in turn, allows for unparalleled comparability across states and other APCD systems 
  • Analysis & Application Development: addressing the intended analytic scope and reporting priorities of the APCD system during development phases to establish the overall solution parameters, including value and sustainability 

“Time and time again, we’ve seen the need for clearer information to allow for informed healthcare decision making,” notes Jo Porter, MPH, deputy director for the Institute for Health Policy and Practice at the University of New Hampshire and co-chair of the APCD Council. “We are excited for new states to develop these databases through this easy-to-use manual, which puts both learnings from the council and many years of working with states on APCD development into one place.”

To download a copy of the new manual, click here.

The APCD Council also recently hosted a webinar to provide an overview of its APCD Development Manual. If you would like to watch a recording of the webinar, please click here