The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology has just released its five-year strategic plan. Electronic health records and supporting systems are leading stars. The plan states information captured from electronic health records can be used to speed-up the creation and dissemination of overall medical knowledge, creating what ONC labels a “learning health system.”
According to an article in FireceGovernment.com, in the U.S. today, only a quarter of physician offices and 15 percent of hospitals have EHR systems in place. However, that number will likely increase as Health and Human Services distributes up to $27.4 billion in incentive funding to the private sector for EHR adoption over the next ten years. And more incentives exist. Medicare payments to providers will start to drop in 2015 unless providers demonstrate “meaningful use” of EHRs–a serious “hammer.”
The plan outlines ONC working first with a few federal agencies, then later expanding participation to other public- and private-sector organizations. According to the article, agencies first in line for participation might include the Food and Drug Administration, the Center for Disease Control, and an HHS database that will use insurance claims as a basis for medical research.
The plan is open for comments from the public through April 22, 2011.
Read more: Big data will transform healthcare, says ONC – FierceGovernmentIT http://www.fiercegovernmentit.com/story/big-data-will-transform-healthcare-says-onc/2011-03-27#ixzz1I1kr5m6Z