The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has delayed the data collection mandated by the Physician Payments Sunshine Act until January 1, 2013.
The Sunshine Act required drug, medical device, and other manufacturers to annually report payments made to physicians and teaching hospitals in excess of $10 for consulting, research, speaking, entertainment, travel, or food.
The Sunshine Act was devised to prevent conflicts of interest between physicians and the medical device/pharmaceutical industries, and to ensure transparency for patients. To that end, the data collection will be posted on a website in a "clear and understandable format."
A proposed rule released in December 2011 originally called for data collection to begin later this year. However, CMS stated in a blog post that it was delaying data collection "in order to provide time for organizations to prepare for data submission" and to address the more than 300 comments it received in response to the proposed rule.
The extra time, CMS claims, will allow it to address operational and implementation issues and to ensure the accuracy of the data that is collected.
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