January 25, 2007
HHS on Wednesday released a report that detailed its progress since 2004 in automating the health care system, Healthcare IT News reports (Monegain, Healthcare IT News, 1/24).
HHS labels 2004 as its “laying the foundation” year, 2005 as its “initial steps and progress” year, and 2006 as its “major accomplishments” year. The accomplishments include:
- The American Health Information Community in May 2006 releasing its initial recommendations on consumer empowerment, chronic care, electronic health records and biosurveillance;
- AHIC in August 2006 recommending three sets of interoperability standards for harmonization;
- President Bush in August 2006 issuing an executive order on value-driven health care;
- The Certification Commission for Health IT certifying 37 ambulatory EHR products; and
- HHS issuing regulations to allow hospitals and other providers to donate health IT to physicians, which could accelerate IT adoption.
The report also outlines plans for 2007, including recommendations from three AHIC work groups, improved patient privacy and security between states, adoption of health IT in the federal system and expanded certification of EHRs from CCHIT, according to the HHS “Health Information Technology Initiative” report (HHS “Health Information Technology Initiative” report, 1/23).