The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) invites public comment on the Federal Health IT Strategic Plan. The plan, last updated in 2008, addresses the nation’s health IT agenda from 2011-2015. Please make your comments by April 22, 2011.
Background from the press release:
Despite evidence of the benefits of the use of health IT, today only 25-percent of physician offices and 15-percent of hospitals take advantage of electronic health records (EHRs). Two major pieces of legislation, enacted over the past two years, are dramatically changing the health IT landscape and providing an opportunity to modernize the way care is delivered and improve the health of all Americans – the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act and the Affordable Care Act. legislation.
The Plan begins in 2011, when it became possible for eligible professionals and eligible hospitals that demonstrate “meaningful use” of certified electronic health record (EHR) technology to receive incentive payments under the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs as authorized by the HITECH Act.
“We’ve entered a new era in health care, the era of meaningful use,” said David Blumenthal, MD, MPP, national coordinator for health information technology. “Meaningful use provides an opportunity to bring electronic health information to life in the care of patients and power an information-driven health care system that is capable of never before imagined levels of performance.”
Building on meaningful use, the Plan also addresses how ONC and its federal partners will increase protections to ensure that electronic health information is kept private and secure, empower individuals with access to their electronic health information, and enhance the ability to study care delivery and payment systems.