Intermountain, Cerner among those meeting with the White House about interoperability

White House
White House Adviser Jared Kushner and CMS Administrator Seema Verma are spearheading a meeting about interoperability on Tuesday.

Intermountain Healthcare and Cerner are among the organizations that will have the ear of top White House officials on Tuesday for a meeting about EHR interoperability.

The effort is spearheaded by President Donald Trump’s senior adviser and son-in-law Jared Kushner, who directs the Office of American Innovation, along with Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Administrator Seema Verma. According to an agenda obtained by FierceHealthcare, the afternoon meeting will include four working group sessions examining the government’s role in encouraging interoperability—including a discussion about creating definitions for meaningful use and information blocking—technical standards and authentication, overcoming obstacles to patient and physician engagement and encouraging private sector innovation.

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Department of Health and Human Services acting Secretary Eric Hargan is also scheduled to speak at the event. Donald Rucker, M.D., who leads the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT, will be in attendance.

The White House is seeking feedback from providers, vendors and information exchange organizations. Intermountain CEO Marc Harrison, M.D., will be at the meeting along with the health system's Chief Medical Information Officer Stan Huff, M.D., spokesperson Daron Cowley told FierceHealthcare. A Cerner spokesperson also confirmed the EHR vendor is participating, but did not specify which employees will represent the company.

Mariann Yeager, CEO of The Sequoia Project, will also be in attendance. The nonprofit organization plans to highlight its progress with Carequality, a national-level framework for health data exchange, and eHealth Exchange, which leverages data from the Department of the Defense, the Department of Veterans Affairs, CMS and the Social Security Administration.

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“We look forward to a robust discussion of the significant progress made to date and innovative ideas to further nationwide health data sharing,” spokesperson Dawn Van Dyke said in an email. “We’ll talk about innovative ideas to continue to increase the breadth of connectivity and the diversity of data and technology supported.”

HIMSS spokesperson Joyce Lofstrom said "several nationally recognized interoperability experts from our Board of Directors" will be participating. She did not specify which board members would be in attendance. 

Several other data exchange organizations will reportedly be at the meeting, including the CARIN Alliance, a group convened by four former federal officials: David Blumenthal, David Brailer, Aneesh Chopra and Mike Leavitt. The Indiana Health Information Exchange was also invited to participate. Neither organization responded to a request for confirmation.