The not-for-profit eHealth Initiative is rejecting what it calls a "heavy regulatory approach" in a proposed federal framework for governing the Nationwide Health Information Network.
The initiative, in an 23-page letter (PDF) dated June 26 but released along with a prepared news statement on Tuesday, took issue with much of the direction of a formal request for information issued May 15 by HHS' Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology.
That request included 66 specific questions that ONC wanted answered about who should participate in the proposed network as well as who would decide who can join and under what rules. The ONC proposed creating a category of nationwide health information network validated entities, or NVEs, for eligible participants, and conditions for trusted exchange, or CTEs, as criteria for eligibility.
"ONC's proposed regulations could potentially hamper, not enhance, the growth and development of the health information exchange sector," said Jennifer Covich Bordenick, eHI's CEO, in the release. "Therefore, we strongly recommend that ONC take a step back, seek more input from additional stakeholders, and develop a revised approach that better supports the acceleration of trusted data exchange."