The Council for Affordable Quality Healthcare says its Universal Credentialing DataSource program is up and running in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.[@@]

Managed care companies developed the program in an effort to prove their commitment to finding ways to make life easier for doctors.

The CAQH program sharply reduces the need for the 250,000 participating doctors and other providers to file and update applications with managed care networks, according to CAQH, Alexandria, Va.

CAQH estimates that the UCD is cutting administrative costs by $33 million per year and already has eliminated the need for providers to file 900,000 credentialing applications.

In related news, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida, Jacksonville, Fla., has agreed to use the UCD to ease credentialing for the 38,000 providers in its own provider network.