CMS awards Georgia $4M grant to initiate website

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has awarded Georgia’s Department of Community Health (DCH) a $3.93 million transformation grant to help build a statewide health information transparency website.

The website will provide healthcare consumers, including underserved patients, access to online information on healthcare and prescription costs, quality of care and the availability of services. It will also incorporate disease management and wellness information for users.

Sonny Munter, chief information officer of DCH, said that the website would initially use information already contained in state agency databases but eventually gather additional data from hospitals, physician practices, long-term care facilities and other organizations.

The Medicaid Transformation Grant program, funded by Congress as part of the Deficit Reduction Act, is designed to help Medicaid agencies improve efficiency, economy and quality of care. The program has awarded $103 million to 27 agencies in January and will award another $51 million in grants for 2007 and 2008.

The website is scheduled to launch in 2008.