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Healthcare Insights

Top taxonomies for oncology claims-based specialists

Unfortunately for those marketing or selling to healthcare providers, some of the information providers supply when applying for a National Provider Identifier (NPI), such as a medical specialty or taxonomy, can become outdated over their years of practice. The claims-based specialty designations Definitive Healthcare produces in our PhysicianView product allow you to target healthcare providers based on their specific areas of focus with a greater degree of accuracy and precision.

What is a taxonomy code?

A taxonomy code is a 10-digit unique code that designates a provider’s classification and specialization. Providers use this code when they apply for an NPI. Since an NPI is required for a provider to bill payors, it is sought early in their career. Taxonomy-based designations are used frequently to determine a provider’s specialty.

Medical taxonomy codes are self-reported by providers and may not accurately reflect the procedures performed or patients diagnosed. For example, as a provider continues to train, specialize, or even branch into other focus areas, their taxonomy code may not change to reflect that journey.

What is a claims-based specialty?

Claims-based specialty designations are a form of healthcare commercial intelligence available in our PhysicianView product.

Claims-based specialty data look at providers’ care practice patterns to provide a more accurate representation of their specialty based on the type of patients they see and the procedures they perform. This designation can differ from the traditional taxonomy code associated with a physician’s NPI. . And for those that sell and market to healthcare providers, the data-driven input can help them sell more effectively or optimize their marketing campaigns.

For example, if a biopharma company wants to know more about doctors who treat cancer patients, they could miss providers that are billing for cancer-based procedures or diagnoses that have a non-oncology taxonomy-based specialty.

To highlight the value of claims-based specialty data, this Healthcare Insight reviews the recorded taxonomies associated with oncology claims-based specialists.

How many oncology claims-based specialists have a different primary taxonomy?

We track nearly 27,000 healthcare provider profiles with an oncology claims-based specialty, indicating that it is the provider’s primary specialty based on the procedures and patients they see. Of those providers, 2,140 providers have a taxonomy-based specialty outside of oncology or hematology. Here are the other specialties that top the list.

Top non-oncology medical specialties for oncology claims-based specialists

RankPrimary taxonomy-based specialtyNumber of providersExplore dataset
1Internal medicine867Explore
2Pediatric medicine381Explore
4Nurse - nurse practitioner159Explore
7Radiology - diagnostic radiology48Explore
8Hospice and palliative care40Explore
9Family practice29Explore
10Physician Assistant19Explore

Fig 1. Data is from the Definitive Healthcare PhysicianView product and reviews the top taxonomy-based primary specialty outside of oncology for providers with a claims-based specialty of oncology. Claims-based specialty is a proprietary designation from Definitive Healthcare. Data is sourced from all-payor claims, proprietary research, the NPI registry, Physician Compare, and more. Accessed March 2024.

The majority of the 2,140 providers with a different taxonomy designation from their claims-based specialty designation have a primary specialty of internal medicine.

Internal medicine is a broad specialty, one of the most common medical specialties, and many providers may choose to complete a fellowship to subspecialize further after they begin practicing. Oncology is one of the popular subspecialties that internal medicine providers may focus on, which may account for it taking the top spot.

Pediatric medicine takes second place as the taxonomy-based specialty for providers with a claims-based oncology specialty. These providers may end up working with pediatric patients with cancer during their careers.

Learn more

Healthcare Insights are developed with healthcare commercial intelligence from the Definitive Healthcare platform. Want even more insights? Start a free trial now and get access to the latest healthcare commercial intelligence on hospitals, physicians, and other healthcare providers.