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Smart Health-Care Strategy Hidden in ‘Cliff’ Deal

Jan. 9 (Bloomberg) -- One little-noted provision I was encouraged to see tucked in last week’s fiscal-cliff legislation is Section 601(b): an incentive for doctors to expand their use of something called clinical data registries.

These registries collect information on patient characteristics, patterns of care and outcomes that can be crucial to evaluating what medical techniques and strategies work and which ones don’t. Unfortunately, registries are not as widespread as they should be -- and the ones that exist often are limited to particular types of care.