Physician informaticist John Halamka, M.D., was named to the board of directors of information technology company SafeMed, San Diego, a developer of electronic communications and decision-support tools and services, the company announced. Halamka, 45, is chief information officer of Harvard Medical School and the CareGroup Healthcare System, parent of 585-bed Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston. Halamka also serves as chairman of the federally funded Healthcare Information Technology Standards Panel, which works to harmonize health IT standards needed to carry out the tasks in various use cases chosen by the American Health Information Community, a healthcare IT advisory panel named by HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt in 2005. In an e-mail, Halamka said he joined the SafeMed board at the request of the senior leaders of the Beth Israel Deaconess Physician Organization "because they see SafeMed as a very important strategic partner." SafeMed lists the Beth Israel physician group as a business partner on its Web site, along with ambulatory and hospital electronic medical record vendors including eClinicalWorks, NextGen, Misys, payer Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Massachusetts, and prescription drug formulary information exchange RxHub, which was founded by three of the largest pharmacy benefit management companies. SafeMed is headed by Chief Executive Officer Richard Noffsinger, who took over in January from company founder and physician Ahmed Ghouri, M.D.,who served as a co-investigator on several phase-three drug trials, according to biographies and news releases on the company's Web site. Noffsinger previously served as president and chief operating officer of Amicore, an electronic medical-record systems vendor, a company launched with fanfare in 2001 as a collaboration of IT giants Microsoft Corp. and IBM Corp., and drugmaker Pfizer.
Halamka, John, M.D.
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