HHS has $1.25 million in grant money it wants to divvy up between six to 12 organizations to develop ways to improve interoperability of healthcare information technology.
The grant opportunities were announced by Dr. Karen DeSalvo, head of HHS' Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, at the Health Datapalooza conference underway this week in Washington, D.C.
The grants are part of an ongoing effort by the ONC to encourage the use of open, standards-based technology for health information exchange. They come following the December release of the agency's 2016 list of recommended data standards and implementation guides for health information exchange.
“We have made significant progress in the flow of health information, but we still have work to do to ensure different systems speak the same language,” DeSalvo said in a news release.
Grant applicants must focus their efforts either on medication management, lab data exchange, care coordination or a self-selected area to demonstrate advancement in interoperability. The projects also must aim to improve practice and/or cost efficiency, clinical quality, the patient experience, safety, privacy and security or “interoperable exchange,” according to HealthITBuzz, the ONC's official blog.
Within one year, grantees must demonstrate evidence that their chosen interoperability standards and technology are ready “for widespread use and larger investments,” according to the ONC. Letters of intent to participate in the program are due June 10.