U.S. Senators Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) recently pitched in Politico legislation they introduced in June to open Medicare’s claims database to the general public.

Free access is available to bureaucrats and some academic researchers, the senators argued, despite a federal court ruling to expand access. Making claims and payment data easily available would enable consumers to find out how often a particular physician orders tests and other treatments and their costs, as well as price variations between local hospitals and practices.

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