Recommendations for Monitoring Access to Care among Medicaid Beneficiaries at the State-level. Findings for Potential Data Sources for State-level Medicaid Access

02/01/2013

Several data sources for measuring access to care for Medicaid beneficiaries were considered as potential sources for constructing access indicators. The primary criteria for selecting data sources included coverage of all states (even if current sample sizes do not permit state-level estimates) and the presence of access-related variables. There are other quality data sources examining access issues for Medicaid beneficiaries, including state-specific surveys,[1] initiatives to collect data from Medicaid Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) using the Health Plan Employer Data and Information Set (HEDIS) and the Consumer Assessment of Health Plans Survey (CAHPS),[2] and monitoring beneficiary satisfaction through customer service inquires and complaints. These efforts are essential resources for individual states to monitor access questions during ACA implementation. However, these data collection efforts are not conducted consistently and are not comparable across states, so they were not included for consideration in this project.

To facilitate the review of potential data sources, NORC and the TEP applied four criteria:[3]

■        Accuracy: relates to the closeness between estimated and true (unknown) values

■        Relevance: refers to the idea that the data collection program measures concepts that are meaningful and useful to data users

■        Timeliness: refers to the length of the data collection's production time; it can also refer to the frequency of data collection

■        Accessibility: refers to the ability of data users to obtain the products of the data collection program

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