HHS Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology in the next four years will focus on initiatives that enhance access to electronic health information and enable use of data to benefit public health needs through its 2008-12 strategic plan.
The plan, announced during a meeting of the American Health Information Community, has two main goals: enabling higher-quality, cost-efficient, patient-focused healthcare and increasing the appropriate and timely access to electronic health information to benefit research, quality improvement, emergency preparedness and public health. Four objectives of privacy and security, interoperability, adoption and collaborative governance revolve around both goals, and projects in each of those four categories will be developed, according to the plan announced by Robert Kolodner, national coordinator for health IT.
In addition to the plan, ONCHIT is asking for about $6 million more in its estimated fiscal 2009 budget. The office has requested $66.1 million to fund IT initiatives, an increase of $5.5 million over 2008. -- by Jean DerGurahian