CHIME to ONC: Allow plenty of time to encourage EHR adoption

Along with dozens of other organizations, the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) has sent the Office of the National Coordinator of Health IT (ONC) its official comments on the new Federal Health IT Strategic Plan: 2011-2015, which was released a few weeks ago.

The main thrust of CHIME's comments is that the government should refine the strategic plan to increase the likelihood that providers will adopt health IT and use it in an effective way. Specifically, CHIME wants ONC to "provide standardized approaches and to allow sufficient time to encourage the adoption of electronic health records systems and supporting technologies by providers," according to a press release.

"The Strategic Plan is important for us to understand how the government perceives the next steps in achieving meaningful use of health IT," Gretchen Tegethoff, CIO of George Washington University Hospital and vice chair of CHIME's Advocacy Leadership Team, said, according to the announcement. "This plan offers hospital CIOs a chance to gauge their progress against future goals and helps us see how implementations we're making today will fit into larger plans down the road."

The strategic plan describes how ONC will work collaboratively with other federal agencies and the private sector to advance toward the goals of meaningful use--higher quality care at a lower cost. The plan also addresses security concerns, sets goals for empowering patients with electronic access to their own health information, and seeks to harness IT to study care delivery and payment systems.

To learn more:
- read CHIME's press release
- here's CHIME's letter to Farzad Mostashari (.pdf)
- check out the overview of the strategic plan 

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