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When a Medicare beneficiary with Part D coverage fills a prescription, the prescription drug plan submits a record to CMS. The PDE file includes all transactions covered by the Medicare prescription drug plan for both Prescription Drug Plans (PDPs) and Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug Plans (MA-PDs).

What does this file include? (variable highlights)

Why do researchers request this file?

  • Studies that include prescription drugs as a treatment of interest
  • Research comparing outcomes of treatment

Special considerations

  • These files do not have information on drugs given during hospitalizations or which are paid under other auspices (e.g., hospice)
  • If the Drug characteristics variables are selected during the request process, these are appended to the PDE.

Privacy Level
Research Identifiable Files