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January 31, 2013
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News for healthcare CIOs

  Top Story 
  • ONC releases guidance on HIE development, conducts hearing
    A series of reports has been issued by the ONC to make health care providers more familiar with the different high-impact services that support health information exchange. The themes covered include master data management, query-based exchange and consumer participation in HIE. In addition, the Health Policy and Standards committees held a hearing last Tuesday to discuss opportunities that HIEs open up, as well as business and technical barriers. Healthcare IT News (1/29) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Bill Spooner comments on the challenges of HIEs
    I enjoyed the opportunity to participate in the Tuesday joint HIT Policy and Standards Committees' hearing on HIE, providing comment and fielding questions on a panel focused on technical and business issues, as well as potential solutions.

    It was an interesting mix of conversation. On the one hand, the sentiment was expressed that HIE adoption is progressing way too slowly, and the ONC could apply additional regulatory stimulus. This is reinforced by the suggestion that Congress is becoming skeptical about HIT, and funding might be reduced when or if the federal debt ceiling is seriously addressed. On the other hand, ONC has heard our message as to the need for tightening interoperability standards while providing flexibility in numerous other areas, such as use of Direct vs. Exchange protocols, the coexistence of community and enterprise HIEs, and governance as we seek to reach the meaningful use stage 2 usage thresholds.

    It was worthwhile to discuss and reinforce the numerous challenges: standards that need to be tightened; patient identification without a common identifier; immature governance; limited sustainability models; and others. It is important to recognize the unstated ONC challenge that the industry must progress in our semi-voluntary adoption, taking advantage of the flexibility provided. As our collaborative care models mature, HIE will be the essential glue to the fragmented patient record and communication tool among providers in disparate settings. We must keep the pace! LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

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  Strategy & Leadership 
  • Analysis cites 6 key determinants of ACO readiness
    An accountable care organization's readiness is determined by six primary factors, according to an in-depth review of 59 groups operating 88 different hospitals. These include existing relationships with other providers, an advanced EHR system coupled with a health information exchange adoption strategy and clinical integration across the entire spectrum of care. (1/29) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • AHRQ accepts nominations for 2 quality indicator workgroups
    The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality is looking for members for two contracted workgroups that will be responsible for improving and launching new AHRQ quality indicators. Selection of workgroup members will be based on criteria such as understanding of health care quality metrics and health care experience. Healthcare IT News (1/28) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Technology Spotlight  
  • HIT sector raised about $1.2B in VC funding in 2012, report says
    A Mercom Capital Group report finds the health IT sector drew almost $1.2 billion in venture capital funding from 163 deals last year, surpassing the totals for 2011 and 2010. "There is significant investment and funding going into companies that engage the consumers -- like mobile health, telehealth, personal health and social health," Mercom managing partner Raj Prabhu said. Healthcare Informatics online (1/29) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Survey: Health-tracking apps and devices slowly gain popularity
    Sixty-nine percent of American adults monitor at least one aspect of their health, and 21% of those who do use some form of technology, such as a smartphone application or an electronic device, a Pew Research Center survey found. "It turns out that half of trackers say they are keeping track of progress just in their heads," said Susannah Fox of the center's Internet and American Life Project. Some apps transmit data to users' doctors, enabling them to spot early warning signs and adjust treatment accordingly, and many patients who have used digital health technology said it prompted conversations with their doctors. (1/28), The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (1/27) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Management & Operation 
  • Report: Providers are dissatisfied with oncology IT systems
    A KLAS Research report finds health care groups are dissatisfied with major vendors' oncology IT systems, citing reporting and alerts as the two most troubling aspects of the technology. Health groups also cited meaningful use as a major challenge involving the technology, saying vendors differ in their capabilities to provide MU support. Healthcare Informatics online (1/29) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Regulatory & Legislative 
  • Mostashari: Care coordination, payment and value fuel HIE growth
    Most groups that already are exchanging health data cite business value for patients and doctors as the key driver for HIEs. On the whole, HIEs are "trending toward care coordination, trending to the arc of payment, trending toward value not volume," National HIT Coordinator Dr. Farzad Mostashari said during a joint HIT Policy and Standards Committees hearing. Government Health IT online (1/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Vendor Watch 
  • Developer challenge targets tools to address urgent health needs
    The Innovate Health Tech NYC challenge, launched by the New York City Economic Development Corp. and Health 2.0, calls on developers to create commercially viable tools, such as analytics software and mobile applications, to address "urgent health care problems." The contest, which runs through May 2, will give three winners prizes totaling $50,000. (1/29) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  CHIME News 
  • Do you have what it takes to be a successful health care CIO?
    Get your hands dirty at CHIME’s Healthcare CIO Boot Camp. During this intensive 3 ½ day program, attendees learn the seven success factors from a faculty of health care CIO thought leaders. Join Program Director Tim Zoph, FCHIME, at the next Healthcare CIO Boot Camp, scheduled to be held April 13-16 in Chicago. Register online. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Any workout which does not involve a certain minimum of danger or responsibility does not improve the body -- it just wears it out."
--Norman Mailer,
American writer

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