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The Health Data Access Initiative (HDAI)

Health care utilization data from the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) are a key data source for population health research. UC researchers collectively spend millions of dollars each year accessing these data, yet once purchased, they can be re-used for a fraction of the cost.

CPL seeks to make these data accessible to a wider range of UC students and researchers.

The Health Data Access Initiative (HDAI) will establish a UC-wide repository for Medicare and Medicaid data from CMS. CPL will use a pool of funding to help purchase CMS data costing hundreds of thousands of dollars. The HDAI will then make it possible for UC researchers to re-use these CMS data for an accessible fee (see below).

HDAI will support a range of projects across the social and health sciences.

What are the costs?

For non-reuse requests, CMS’s fee list provides pricing.  Through our Seed Grant program, CPL will consider matching funding for researchers purchasing CMS data through HDAI. This can substantially lower the costs for research times, both through the matching funding and by reusing existing data from prior HDAI projects.

For reuse requests, CMS charges a $2,000 fee for data reuse. CPL charges an additional $2,864 fee that covers our costs for hosting, curating, and provisioning the data.  This fee is subject to changes each July.  Both fees can be waived through successful applicants to our Seed Grant program.

What data are available?

HDAI’s current projects and datasets are listed in the table below. These datasets are national in scope, and not just for California. The full listing of data available from CMS is here.


What is the process for requesting access to the data?

If you’re interested in using the CMS data, reach out to with a paragraph describing your research project, and any information about the data that would be required.

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