Grassley Statement on HHS Report Concerning Open Payments Data
WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa today released the following statement on the recent report issued by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) regarding open payments reporting.
“Oversight is an essential function of Congress. It promotes transparency and accountability in our federal agencies and gives Americans increased confidence that their tax dollars are going to good and legitimate use.
“The recent report released by the Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General shows that there is still work that needs to be done in order to ensure transparency in the relationships between drug and medical device makers and the physicians, teaching hospitals and all other medical providers and institutions. I encourage CMS to efficiently implement the recommendations. Health care consumers deserve to have all necessary information about their medications, procedures and devices available to them in order to make the best decisions for their health.”
In June, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS), a department under the umbrella of HHS, released its annual report to Congress on its Open Payments database. Open Payments is a mandatory, national disclosure program created by the Physician Payments Sunshine Act, legislation authored by Grassley. The program promotes transparency and accountability by providing information about transfers of value by drug and medical device makers to physicians and teaching hospitals.
In 2015, Grassley, along with Sen. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, introduced the Provider Payment Sunshine Act, legislation to apply the same disclosures of drug company and medical device maker payments to nurse practitioners and physician assistants. The senators reintroduced the legislation in 2017.