How were DAC Fees Developed?
During early summer 2017, a working group, which included faculty, project team members, and DAC staff, met 4 times to review the current DAC billing methodology and propose some new options that align with the DAC’s billing principles to make the allocation of costs:
- Simple and transparent
- Financially sustainable
- Help promote a positive working environment
This working group engaged in the review, idea generation, financial analysis, and proposal development, which led to the identification of several option that ranged from a narrow data/system user base to a broader beneficiary/consumer base (as shown below).
- The working group communicated a strong preference towards spreading the costs more widely across users and beneficiaries for several reasons:
- Sustainability risk is reduced with a larger user base than a smaller user base where only one or two large grants are carrying the financial weight of the DAC;
- Those who are benefiting from the data are sharing in the costs; and
- There is an incentive to use best practices working with the data in the secure DAC environment.
Who is responsible to pay DAC fees?
The lead PI on the DUA is responsible for paying DAC fees. In the case of DUAs originating from other institutions where TDI is a collaborator, the primary TDI PI collaborator is responsible for paying the DAC fees, including fees incurred for users at external institutions.
When are the DAC fees billed?
DAC fees will be billed on a 12-month basis, invoiced monthly, for most projects. In exceptional circumstance, such as a K-award, we will consider reducing the time frame to 6 months. Any DAC data use beyond 6 months will result in DAC fee charges for the remaining fiscal year.
When will billing begin?
DAC fees will be collected at the beginning of the fiscal year (July 1st) or at the beginning of the DUA approval date. DAC fees will be prorated through the end of the fiscal year for those projects starting after July 1st.
When will billing end?
The grant/project will pay through the end of the fiscal year OR through the DUA expiration date OR the balance of the grant/project year, whichever is later.
What about students on DUAs?
As a Data Service Center, the DAC is required to bill all users/beneficiaries of DAC data and the DAC enclave in the same way. Therefore, we are unable to provide a price break for students, even where they have obtained their own DUA for student research and CMS waived their DUAs. All students users must pay the DAC fees and any consulting fees if applicable. This responsibility lies with the student user and the faculty mentor.
How is DAC Data defined?
DAC data includes any analytic data-set and/or ouput, suppressed/unsuppressed and identifiable/de-identified, utilizing DAC data whose purpose is to derive a research question.
Who is considered a DAC User?
DAC Users Definition
- Any individual that has been granted permission to access and use the DAC Server network and/or data on a CMS DUA, and/or accessing DAC Information Systems.
- All individuals listed on a Data Use Agreement (DUA):
- Principal Investigators;
- Principal Investigators and/or research team members with direct, unsupervised access to individual level data;
- Principal Investigators and/or research team members supervising individuals with access to individual level data;
- Anyone working with DAC data on the secure DAC system or off the DAC system in support of a research project, including writing manuscripts using CMS data. (This includes any CMS de-identified/aggregated data that meets suppression and is not publicly available)
Note: When a PI signs a CMS DUA, they are taking responsibility for the requirements in that DUA and therefore have access to or supervise someone with access to identifiable CMS data. The primary investigator on a grant must be the PI on a CMS DUA. If a primary investigator is external to Dartmouth, then a Dartmouth PI must also be listed on the CMS DUA as well. CMS requires a collaborating PI in order for external PIs to work with Dartmouth data.