About CAQH
CAQH, a nonprofit alliance of health plans and trade associations, serves as a catalyst for healthcare industry collaboration on initiatives that simplify and streamline healthcare administration. CAQH solutions help promote quality interactions between plans, providers and other stakeholders, reduce costs and frustrations associated with healthcare administration, facilitate administrative healthcare information exchange and encourage administrative and clinical data integration. Visit www.caqh.org for more information.

Chris McNamara
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400,000 Providers Eliminating Redundant Forms, Saving Nearly Million Annually Through CAQH Data-Collection Initiative

Universal Credentialing Datasource® Achieving Administrative Simplification Goals

WASHINGTON, DC - 12/12/2006

CAQH announced today that its Universal Credentialing Datasource® (UCD) service has topped the 400,000 registered provider mark, making it the healthcare industry’s most successful initiative to simplify provider data-collection.

UCD is effectively reducing provider administrative costs by nearly million per year or 2 million man-hours (the equivalent of 919 full-time employees) – the amount of time required to complete and send the application forms, based on a Medical Group Management Association cost analysis.

“From the beginning, we thought our initiative could greatly reduce the costs and aggravation related to a burdensome-but-necessary process for all providers,” said Robin J. Thomashauer, CAQH executive director.  “Surpassing 400,000 providers clearly demonstrates that the Universal Credentialing Datasource is delivering on that promise and rapidly becoming the industry standard.”

CAQH estimates UCD has eliminated more than 1.43 million legacy credentialing applications to date.

Launched in 2002, UCD allows providers and other health professionals in all 50 states and the District of Columbia to enter credentialing information, including their Type I National Provider Identifier, into a single, uniform online application. Free to providers, this process meets the credentialing needs of most health plans, hospitals and other healthcare organizations. The service streamlines the initial application and re-credentialing processes, and offers health organizations real-time access to reliable provider information for quality assurance and support services, such as directories and claims processing. All data submitted by providers through UCD is maintained by CAQH in a secure, state-of-the-art data center.

More than 280 health plans currently participate in UCD; approximately 10,000 – 12,000 new providers register in the service each month. During the past six months, the following organizations have begun using the service: AMERIGROUP; AmeriHealth Mercy; Bakersfield Family Medical Center; Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island; Cenpatico Behavioral Health, LLC (Centene Corporation); Center Care Health Benefit Programs (Commonwealth Health Corporation); Clarian Health; Continuum Health Partners, Inc.; HealthPlus of Michigan; Heritage Health Systems Inc.; Hudson Health Plan; Independent Living Systems, LLC; Indiana University Health Care Associates, Inc.; Kentucky Medical Services Foundation; Kentucky Orthopedic Rehab Team; Magellan Health Services, Inc.; Managed Health Network, Inc. Behavioral; New Avenues, Inc.; Physicians United Plan; QMedCare of New Jersey; Salisbury Health Group; Senior Whole Health; SIHO Insurance Services; St. Francis Health Network; and University Health Plans, Inc.

UCD is supported by America’s Health Insurance Plans, the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American College of Physicians, the American Health Information Management Association, the American Medical Association, the Medical Group Management Association, the National Association of Medical Staff Services and other provider organizations, and recognized by a number of state legislators and insurance commissioners. The newest version of the UCD application meets all related URAC, National Committee for Quality Assurance and Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations standards.