The CMS will contact 25,000 randomly selected providers this week to participate in a survey on their satisfaction with Medicare fee-for-service contractors. The roughly 30-minute survey is designed to assess providers' satisfaction with contractors' claims processing, handling of inquiries and appeals, overall communications with providers and other areas. Medicare contracts with 42 companies to process and pay more than $280 billion in fee-for-service claims annually. The CMS said it will make the results available online in July.
In other federal agency news, HHS' Health Resources and Services Administration launched a 20-employee office dedicated to extending its health information technology efforts to community health and HIV/AIDS centers. In the works since early 2005, the Office of Health Information Technology was chartered Dec. 27. It will be headed by Associate HRSA Administrator Cheryl Austein-Casnoff.