National Advisory Panel To Study Health IT

November 10, 2006

A new national advisory panel was launched this week to analyze the safety and effectiveness of electronic health records and systems, InformationWeek reports.

The panel, which does not yet have a formal name, is being led and initially funded by Geisinger Health System. The panel will study the “gaps” of safety and effectiveness in the health IT systems that already have been implemented, said Dr. Ron Paulus, a member of the new panel and Geisinger’s chief technology and innovation officer.

Deploying EHRs, electronic prescribing and computerized physician order entry systems can create interoperability problems and process changes that could potentially put patients at risk, according to InformationWeek.

The panel plans to develop a database for health care providers to share their best practice solutions. The database would help small physician practices that cannot hire consultants or technical staff to help them implement new systems, Paulus said.

“I think there is a willingness among health care providers to share their lessons and ideas because of the broader mission” of improving health quality, said Dr. Carol Diamond, a member of the new panel and managing director of health programs at the Markle Foundation.

The other members of the panel are:

  • Pascale Carayon, Procter & Gamble Bascom Professor at the University of Wisconsin;
  • Dr. Homer Chin, medical director of Kaiser Northwest Health Plan;
  • Nancy Leveson, professor of aeronautics and astronautics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology;
  • Dr. Clement McDonald, director and research scientist at the Regenstrief Institute and professor at the Indiana University School of Medicine; and
  • Dr. John Tooker, CEO of the American College of Physicians (Kolbasuk McGee, InformationWeek, 11/9).
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