The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has announced that the Healthcare Integrity and Protection Data Bank (HIPDB) and the National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB) will merge on May 6, 2013. On that date, the HIPDB will close down, and all future reporting must be done through the NPDB.
While the databases are merging, there has been no change in the reporting requirements. Any user who was previously required to report information to the HIPDB must now do so through the NPDB. All information currently in the HIPDB will now be available through the NPDB.
This merger was called for in Section 6403 of the Affordable Care Act in order to eliminate duplicative data reporting and access requirements. Previously, the HIPDB collected information relating to exclusion actions against healthcare providers, while the NPDB collected data on adverse actions against physicians and other healthcare practitioners relating to licensure, medical staff privileges, professional liability claims and other areas. Now, all this information will be collected on one data base. Users will now have access to both HIPDB and NPDB data when they run an NPDB query.
HRSA released a final rule on April 5 implementing the merger and otherwise updating the regulations in order to bring them into line with the changes included in the ACA. The full text of the final rule is available here.
HRSA has announced that both systems will be unavailable between 7:00 p.m. on Friday, May 3, 2013 and 8:00 a.m. on Monday, May 6, 2013 in order to complete the merger. As of 8:00 a.m. Monday, the NPDB will reopen as the merged data bank, and the HIPDB will no longer be avaliable.
HRSA will also be hosting live Q&A sessions for data bank participants about the merger. Information about these is available here.
If you have any questions about the merger, or about reporting obligations or other requirements under the NPDB, please contact Ari Markenson, Kelly Skeat or any member of the Benesch Health Care Department.