Academic journal article Research in Healthcare Financial Management

Reply to Research Note on 'An Easier Method to Extract Data from Large Databases: The Medicare Hospital Cost Report Database"

Academic journal article Research in Healthcare Financial Management

Reply to Research Note on 'An Easier Method to Extract Data from Large Databases: The Medicare Hospital Cost Report Database"

Article excerpt

Our paper (Cutting et al. 2007) essentially addressed two issues with respect to the prior, enormous size of the Medicare Hospital Cost Report database. The first was the means to link appropriate files together to access the cost report data, and the second was to split the files into workable components to extract data elements that could be used for academic research. We were working on a project that required data elements contained in the database. Because of limited capabilities and access to a large mainframe computer, we devised a sequence of steps that would enable us to access the data using our stand-alone personal computers. When we described the process during the presentation of our research paper at an academic conference, one of the participants suggested that writing a paper about the methods we used to extract the data would be beneficial to other researchers. We followed through with that suggestion, and the resulting paper was subsequently published in this journal. While we applied the method described in our paper to the Medicare Hospital Cost Report Database, our intent was to describe a general approach which can be used to make any large database accessible to academic researchers with limited computing resources, by using "off the shelf" software. …

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