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Emergency Clearance: Public Information Collection Requirements Submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB)

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AGENCY:

Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

In compliance with the requirement of section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), Department of Health and Human Services, is publishing the following summary of proposed collections for public comment. Interested persons are invited to send comments regarding this burden estimate or any other aspect of this collection of information, including any of the following subjects: (1) The necessity and utility of the proposed information collection for the proper performance of the agency's functions; (2) the accuracy of the estimated burden; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology to minimize the information collection burden.

We are, however, requesting an emergency review of the information collection referenced below. In compliance with the requirement of section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, we have submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) the following requirements for emergency review. We are requesting an emergency review because the collection of this information is needed before the expiration of the normal time limits under OMB's regulations at 5 CFR part 1320. This is necessary to ensure compliance with an initiative of the Administration. The use of the normal clearance procedures is reasonably likely to cause a statutory deadline to be missed.

The purpose of the data is to enable prospective and current Medicare beneficiaries to compare, learn, select and enroll in a plan that best meets their needs. Both stand alone prescription drug plans (PDPs) and Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug (MA-PDs) plans will be required to submit drug pricing and pharmacy network data to CMS. These data will be made publicly available to people with Medicare through the new Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Finder web tool that will be launched in the fall of 2005 on http://www.medicare.gov. The database structure will provide the flexibility to design and communicate plan design, formulary, and pharmacy network information to people with Medicare by displaying program contact and pricing information at the network pharmacy level.

CMS is requesting OMB review and approval of this collection by June 22, 2005, with a 30-day approval period. Written comments and recommendations will be accepted from the public if received by the individuals designated below by May 22, 2005.

To obtain copies of the supporting statement and any related forms for the proposed paperwork collections referenced above, access CMS' Web Site address at http://www.cms.hhs.gov/​regulations/​pra or e-mail your request, including your address, phone number, OMB number, and CMS document identifier, to Paperwork@cms.hhs.gov, or call the Reports Clearance Office on (410) 786-1326.

Interested persons are invited to send comments regarding the burden or any other aspect of these collections of information requirements. However, as noted above, comments on these information collection and recordkeeping requirements must be mailed and/or faxed to the designees referenced below by May 22, 2005:

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, Office of Strategic Operations and Regulatory Affairs, Room C5-13-27, 7500 Security Boulevard, Baltimore, MD 21244-1850, Fax Number: (410) 786-0262, Attn: William N. Parham, III, CMS-10150; and,

OMB Human Resources and Housing Branch, Attention: Christopher Martin, New Executive Office Building, Room 10235, Washington, DC 20503.

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Dated: April 14, 2005.

Michelle Shortt,

Acting Director, Regulations Development Group, Office of Strategic Operations and Regulatory Affairs.

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[FR Doc. 05-8084 Filed 4-21-05; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4120-01-P