HHS to name IT coordinator this week

Well, if the suspense has been eating you up inside, help may be on the way. By the end of this week, HHS should announce an acting National Coordinator for Health Information Technology. That's the target--specifically Friday Sept. 22--identified by David Brailer, M.D., the first person to hold the job and head of the search process. "The acting coordinator is already in government," Brailer said recently in an exclusive interview with Health Data Management. "It's been harder to identify one than we expected."

There are many complications in filling the position, to put it mildly. First, it's a political position, which means it requires a candidate with bargaining skills. Just ask anyone who's tried to be the FDA Commissioner lately what that's like. Add to that that the NCHIT position is probably a two year gig, or at least, until the end of President Bush's term in office. In addition, "the position has to be politically screened," Brailer noted. "That means there are fewer people interested in doing the job and so a smaller universe of candidates."

For more on the position:
- Check out this article from Health Data Management