Finance Committee chairman seeks input on health data transparency

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron WydenRon WydenTrump and GOP wise to keep tax reform and infrastructure separate Dem senator questions Justice Department on warrantless surveillance FCC says it cannot provide more proof of claimed cyberattack MORE (D-Ore.) is asking the healthcare world for its input on how big data could promote reform.

In a letter to roughly 100 stakeholder groups and individuals, Wyden and Finance Committee ranking member Sen. Chuck GrassleyChuck GrassleySenate panel subpoenas co-founder of firm tied to controversial Trump dossier Trump Jr., Manafort still haven't agreed to testify before Senate panel Feinstein: Trump Jr. will be subpoenaed if he refuses to testify MORE (R-Iowa) posed broad questions about how data transparency could benefit their work.

"Increased access to data is already giving providers, consumers, payer and others with powerful resources for improving our healthcare system, and yet significant data gaps continue to exist and limit the full potential," the letter stated.

"What reforms would help reduce the unnecessary fragmentation of healthcare data? What reforms would improve the accessibility and usability of healthcare data for consumers, payer and providers?"

The letter provides a glimpse into one of Wyden's interests and priorities as the new Finance Committee chairman.

The Oregon Democrat has repeatedly touted moves by the Obama administration under the healthcare law to publish data on hospital prices and Medicare billing by physicians.

Grassley, meanwhile, is a longtime transparency advocate who wrote a bill requiring disclosure of ties between doctors and industry. The measure passed as part of ObamaCare.

Groups were asked to respond by Aug. 12.