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Health Equity Data Access Program


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Health Equity Data Access Program

CMS Office of Minority Health (OMH) is supporting five (5) “seats” in the CMS Virtual Research Data Center (VRDC) for a period of 36 months each to assist researchers in gaining access to and understanding of CMS restricted access data. The aim is for the selected researchers to conduct health services research in health equity focusing on minority populations which are experiencing health care inequalities due to race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, and people with disabilities.

Utilizing innovative methods and approaches to health disparities research, results of this effort will provide CMS and its agents, (e.g. Quality Improvement Organizations, Hospital Engagement Networks, etc.) with actionable information on these subgroups of beneficiaries. This will allow CMS and its agents to realize gains in efficiency and effectiveness by focusing – in a more targeted way – on the identification and eradication of health disparities in disadvantaged populations.

Awards for 2016-2019:

Initial seats were awarded for a project period 2016-2019. Please check back in Spring 2019 for an updated announcement about our next project cycle.

Current Projects:

Project Title Principal Investigator Institution
Interaction of Medicaid, Medicare, and Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) in reducing racial/ethnic disparities in primary and specialty care and improving outcomes, based on reductions in ambulatory care sensitive (ACSC) hospital admissions or emergency department (ED) use Leighton Ku, Ph.D., M.P.H. George Washington University
Disparities in surgical care among racial and ethnic minorities in Medicare Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) Andrew J. Schoenfeld, M.D., M.Sc. Brigham and Women’s Hospital
Medicaid Payment Reform and Disparities in Cesarean Birth and Maternal Morbidity Katy Kozhimannil, Ph.D. University of Minnesota School of Public Health
Medicaid Payment Policy and Disparities in Mental Health Care among Medicaid and Dual Eligible Beneficiaries Vickie Fung, Ph.D. Center for Multicultural Mental Health Research and Health Equity Research Lab at Cambridge Health Alliance, and Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School
Assessing Mental Health Care Disparities by Race/Ethnicity, Gender, and Gender Identity Ben Cook, Ph.D. Center for Multicultural Mental Health Research and Health Equity Research Lab at Cambridge Health Alliance, and Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School