* Sally Phillips, a registered nurse, former professor at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center School of Nursing and nurse scholar at the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, Md., is the new director of the AHRQ's Bioterrorism Preparedness Research Program within its Center for Primary Care Research.
Phillips will oversee a multimillion-dollar research portfolio and also work as a liaison within HHS to its Office of Public Health Preparedness and other departments monitoring healthcare system bioterrorism preparedness. "It's very important work we're doing here, providing research to help states and systems that are trying to implement their bioterrorism- preparedness plans," she said.
Phillips knows her way around government. She spent a year with the Colorado Senate Health, Environment, Welfare and Institutions Committee and was a Robert Wood Johnson health policy fellow and analyst for Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) from 1999 to 2001.
* An alliance for the development of voluntary standards for healthcare information technology appointed its first board of 17 directors to represent providers, payers, suppliers and information technology companies.
The Washington-based National Alliance for Health Information Technology, which includes 76 founding organizations, was launched in June as an initiative of the American Hospital Association (June 24, p. 16). The initiative aims to address a lack of progress in formulating and disseminating industrywide technical standards, shortcomings that impede efforts to improve patient safety, business efficiency and quality and consistency of care.
The directors include Gary Mecklenburg, president and CEO of Northwestern Memorial HealthCare, Chicago; Scott Serota, president and CEO of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association; and Curt Selquist, group chairman of Johnson & Johnson.