CMS/HHS collaboration with Archimedes to enable 'unprecedented' data access

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will collaborate with Archimedes—a Calif.-based Kaiser Permanente innovation healthcare modeling and analytics company—to supply “unprecedented” access to synthetic CMS claims data, according to Archimedes' May 1 announcement.

Under the collaboration, Archimedes' ARCHeS Simulation and Analytics software suite will allow researchers to analyze and query the de-identified, 2008-2010 Medicare Data Entrepreneurs' Synthetic Public Use File (DE-SynPUF). “Data entrepreneurs and researchers will be able to use the synthetic data to develop research protocols that will ultimately help users make informed decisions based on the data,” according to the press release.

Among other capabilities, the Archimedes’ population software will allow users to analyze the dataset to understand the rates of various outcomes for particular Medicare populations based on their health conditions, medication use, age or a combination of these variables.

"HHS is committed to furthering the power of data and we have entered into this important collaboration to help maximize the availability and use of the Medical DE-SynPUF dataset," said Bryan Sivak, HHS chief technology officer, in a statement.

Access to the Medicare DE-SynPUF datasets is available at and Archimedes' free software is available here.