Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

The .gov means it’s official.
Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you’re on a federal government site.


The site is secure.
The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely.

Beta Testing the Multi-Payer Claims Database (MPCD)

Consolidating data and evaluating the utility of the Multi-Payer Claims Database.
  • Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE)
Start Date
  • 9/24/2012
  • Linking Clinical and Other Data for Research
  • Use of Enhanced Publically-Funded Data Systems for Research


STATUS: Completed Project


The goal of the Multi-Payer Claims Database (MPCD) was to evaluate the benefits of consolidating longitudinal health care claims data from public and private payers to facilitate comparative effectiveness research (CER). As part of its development, the MPCD underwent a beta test to evaluate its utility by surveying the experiences of federal and contracted researchers who requested and used customized data extracts for CER studies. The beta test was supported by an award from the PCORTF.


The purpose of this project was to conduct a beta test of the Multi-Payer Claims Database (MPCD). During the beta test, the contractor supplied data extracts to researchers accessing the database. Beta test participants included: 14 Federal researchers from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), National Institutes of Health (NIH), ASPE, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), and Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA); and 12 contracted researchers from eight universities. 

Project Objectives:

  • Modify the MPCD web portal home page in preparation for conducting beta-testing of the MPCD.

  • Conduct three CER analyses on the beta release of the MPCD.

  • Assess beta testers’ experiences requesting and using data from the MPCD.


  • In addition to supplemental analyses conducted by federal staff and academic researchers, this project funded three analyses by the contractor to assess the value of the MPCD’s data for CER.

    • The first analysis evaluated comparative effectiveness in patient outcomes of having interventional radiologist establish central venous access versus health care providers who were not interventional radiologists.
    • The second analysis evaluated and compared the use of uterine artery embolization, myomectomy, and laparoscopic hysterectomy to treat clinically significant leiomyomata.
    • The third was designed to evaluate the capacity of the MPCD to answer CER questions based on public health style interventions, such as case management of medical home initiatives. As part of the beta test, the contractor collected information on the beta testers’ experiences requesting and using data from the MPCD.

  • Development of the MPCD was supported through funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), which created a Federal Coordinating Council (FCC) and charged it with developing recommendations on how to invest funds made available to the Secretary for CER. The Council received feedback from the public suggesting that linking longitudinal claims data would help support CER. The MPCD represented a unique effort to link data between public (Medicare and Medicaid) and private payers on a national scope.



  • In May 2014, the project team published a journal article in the Medicare & Medicaid Research Review titled, “Post-Discharge Follow-up Visits and Hospital Utilization by Medicare Patients, 2007-2010.” The article can be found here:

  • The project team published a journal article in January 2018 in the American Journal of Medical Quality titled, “Inappropriate Utilization in Fee-for-Service Medicare and Medicare Advantage Plans.” The article can be found here:

  • In October 2017, the project team published a journal article in the Schizophrenia Bulletin titled, “Twelve-Month Health Care Use and Mortality in Commercially Insured Young People with Incident Psychosis in the United States.” The article can be found here:

  • The project team published a journal article in September 2016 in Arthritis & Rheumatology titled, “Risk of Herpes Zoster in Autoimmune and Inflammatory Diseases: Implications for Vaccines.” The article can be found here:


Below is a list of ASPE-funded PCORTF projects that are related to this project

Comparative Effectiveness Research (CER) Inventory – The purpose of the PCORTF’s specific contribution to the Comparative Effectiveness Research (CER) Inventory was initially to maintain, update, transition, and test the CER Inventory. The original plan was that the project would transition the operations of the inventory to Health & Human Services (HHS) staff at the end of the 2012. During the course of a year, it became evident that inherited factors were inhibiting the user-friendliness and utility of the inventory. As a result, the project was modified to conduct a benchmarking exercise that examined how the inventory performed compared to other databases, (i.e., Google Scholar,, and 

Cross-Network Directory Service – The FDA developed and implemented a Cross Network Directory Service (CNDS) that addressed the stand alone nature of existing distributed research networks and barriers to working across these networks. The CNDS enables individual networks to become a community of interoperable networks, allowing end users to participate in and move around from network to network as research needs to dictate. This product enhances network scalability and enables data partners to engage with multiple networks by allowing them to decide their level of participation and their governance rules. This project created an open source interoperable service that allows data partners to participate in multiple data research networks, query across the networks, and share analytic capabilities and knowledge across networks. The project was piloted across two existing networks: FDA’s Sentinel System and the National Patient Centered Clinical Research Network (PCORnet).

Enhancing Data Resources for Researching Patterns of Mortality in Patient Centered Outcomes Research – Through collaboration between the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS), and Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the overall goal of this project is to increase the availability of information on the cause of death by linking NDI data to other sources. Enabling linkages will allow researchers to develop national estimates of cause-specific death rates following ED visits and/or hospital stays for specific conditions.