Following the April 9 publication of 2012 Medicare Part B payment data on more than 880,000 physicians and other billing professionals, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT is challenging software developers to make tools to help consumers better understand and use the data.

“Because this data exists in raw forms that require interpretation and context, to make an impact on the average consumer it must be presented in ways that they can understand,” according to an ONC notice on its new “Data Supporting Decisions Challenge” that includes monetary prizes totaling $35,000. ONC seeks new interactive data visualization tools “that communicate complex data from multiple sources in ways that support consumer decision making for value based healthcare.”

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