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BSA Prescription Drug Events PUF

This release contains the Basic Stand Alone (BSA) Prescription Drug Events (PDE) Public Use File (PUF) named "CMS 2008 BSA PDE PUF" with information from 2008 Medicare prescription drug claims. The CMS 2008 BSA PDE PUF is an event-level file in which each record is a claim incurred by a 5% sample of Medicare beneficiaries. There are some demographic and claim-related variables provided in this PUF as detailed below. However, as beneficiary identities are not provided, it is not possible to link claims that belong to the same beneficiary in the CMS 2008 BSA PDE PUF.

The CMS 2008 BSA PDE PUF originates from a 5% simple random sample of beneficiaries drawn (without replacement) from the 100% Beneficiary Summary File for reference year 2008. The sample that is used for the CMS 2008 BSA PDE PUF is disjoint from the existing 5% CMS research sample in the sense that there is no overlap in terms of the beneficiaries in the CMS 2008 BSA PDE PUF and the 5% CMS research sample. It is also disjoint from the other BSA PUFs (i.e., CMS 2008 Inpatient Claims PUF, CMS 2008 DME Line Items PUF, and CMS 2008 Hospice Beneficiary PUF) that have been released so far. This property prevents users from linking data across multiple files for identification purposes.

The CMS 2008 PDE PUF contains thirteen (13) variables: A primary record (i.e., event) key indexing the events and twelve (12) analytic variables, listed below. One of the analytic variables, strength of the drug, is provided in two pieces, (a) a numeric variable and (b) a text variable indicating the units. As they can be treated as one variable, there are eleven (11) rather than twelve (12) analytic variables, in addition to the claim ID.

  • Gender (BENE_SEX_IDENT_CD): The beneficiary's gender, (1) male or (2) female.
  •  Age (BENE_AGE_CAT_CD): The beneficiary's age, reported in six categories: (1) under 65, (2) 65 - 69, (3) 70 - 74, (4) 75-79, (5) 80-84, (6) 85 and older.
  •  Drug name (PDE_DRUG_CD): This is a set of 1,022 possible codes, numbered 0 - 1,021. It identifies the drug name.
  •  Drug strength and unit of strength (PDE_DRUG_STR_CD and PDE_DRUG_STR_UNITS): PDE_DRUG_STR_CD is a set of 665 possible codes, numbered 0 - 664. It indicates the strength of the drug. PDE_DRUG_STR_UNITS is a set of 46 possible codes, numbered 0 - 45. It indicates the unit of strength (milligrams, milliliters, etc.).
  •  Drug dose form (PDE_DRUG_DOSE_CD): This is a set of 71 possible codes, numbered 0 - 70. It indicates the form of the drug, such as oral tablet, oral capsule, etc.
  •  Drug class (PDE_DRUG_CLASS_CD): This is a set of 28 possible codes, numbered 0 - 27. It indicates the class of the drug, such as cardiovascular medications, central nervous system medications, etc.
  •  Quantity dispensed (PDE_DRUG_QTY_DIS): The amount of drug that is dispensed. The amounts are rounded according certain rounding rules.
  •  Days supply (PDE_DRUG_DAY_SPLY_CD): This is a set of 7 codes, numbered 1 - 7. It indicates the number of days that the drug is prescribed for. The values are categorized.
  •  Total drug cost (PDE_DRUG_COST): The gross cost of the drug. The amounts are rounded according to certain rounding rules. Note that a total drug cost amount between $0 and $4.99 is rounded to $0 according to the rounding rules.
  •  Payment by patient (PDE_DRUG_PAT_PAY_CD): This is a set of 3 possible codes, numbered 1 - 3. It indicates the amount paid by the patient for the drug: (1) patient paid $0 for the drug (i.e., 0% of the drug cost), (2) patient made a partial payment (i.e., greater than 0% but less than 100% of the total drug cost), and (3) patient made a payment equal to the total drug cost (i.e., 100% of the drug cost).
  •  Drug type code (PDE_DRUG_TYPE_CD): This is a set of 3 possible codes, numbered 0 - 2. It indicates the type of a drug: (0) unknown, (1) brand name drug and (2) generic drug.

In addition to the General documentation file, there are two documentation files for the PDE PUF:

  1. The data dictionary and codebook file contains information about each variable on the file and its values, as well as formatted frequencies for each variable on the data file.
  2. A data users document which gives the file layout for the downloadable CSV file, as well as SAS program code for creating a SAS dataset with variable formats.