Health IT Issues that Deserve a Second Read – February 2017

Top10-200One of the ways that HITECH Answers is different from other media sites is the sense of community. The thought leaders in our community are good about sharing their thoughts on the issues of today. We publish at least eleven guest posts a week now, on our three sites. In case you missed some, here are the top ten read and shared guest posts of the month. You can also read previous month’s Top Ten Lists. Thank you for contributing and reading.

RFI: Strategic Plan for the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health
By William Hersh, MD, Professor and Chair, OHSU
Twitter: @williamhersh

Under the leadership of its new Director, Patricia Brennan, PhD, RN, the National Library of Medicine (NLM) is undertaking a strategic planning process to develop goals and priorities for the NLM going forward. This process builds on a Request for Information (RFI) in 2015 from the NLM Working Group of the Advisory Committee to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director (ACD) to obtain input for a report on a vision for the future of NLM in the context of NLM’s leadership transition and emerging NIH data science priorities. The report was released in 2015. I posted to this blog both the comments that I submitted for the report as well as an overview of the report after it was published. Continue reading on…

Stolen Laptops Class Action Gets New Legs
By David Harlow, JD MPH, Principal, The Harlow Group LLC
Twitter: @healthblawg

Longtime HIPAA aficonados will recall that there is no private right of action under HIPAA. In other words, a patient cannot sue a covered entity for damages as a result of a data breach under HIPAA. However, HIPAA may establish a standard of care relevant to an action under a different legal theory (as when lawsuits are brought under state law since no cause of action is available under HIPAA). Continue reading on…

IoT Devices Top a Long List of 2017 Security Threats
By D’Arcy Gue, Director of Industry Relations, Medsphere Systems Corporation
Twitter: @MedsphereH
Twitter: @DarcyGue

It’s worth remembering that 2016 was dubbed the “year of data security” after 90 percent of healthcare providers suffered data breaches in the previous two years. In particular, the Anthem breach of late 2014/early 2015 got everyone’s attention for the sheer magnitude (around 80 million records) of the hack. Looking back, we can say 2016 lived up to its name as the number of records accessed was significantly lower than the year prior. But IT security is a game of whack-a-mole, so if fewer patient records were lost, malevolent forces simply found other ways to make the lives of healthcare CIOs very difficult. Continue reading on…

Quality Payment Program, Positive for Strong EHR Users
By OmniMD
Twitter: @omnimd

As we have approached the first year for the Quality Payment Program, healthcare professionals need to develop a plan that leverages strong health IT use and health information exchange in order to avoid negative payment adjustments. In a recent op-ed, Jon Law, Executive Director of the Paso el Norte Health Information Exchange in Texas, explained how failing to utilize EHRs and other technologies can have negative financial consequences for HealthCare professionals. Continue reading on…

Retool for 2017 with Informatics: Where Analytics Intersects with Innovation
By Sarianne Gruber
Twitter: @subtleimpact

Raven David, MPH, is a Project Manager for the Department of Biomedical Informatics at Columbia University Medical Center. Her career as an Informaticist is one that she says “she stumbled on.” As an undergraduate at the University of Pennsylvania, she studied Public Health and Urban Studies. It wasn’t until she was working at a local health department in Quality Improvement and Health Services Research, where she was managing the data from sub-grantees and other collaborating organizations. Continue reading on…

Future of HIPAA Enforcement
By Matt Fisher, Attorney and chair of the Health Law Group at Mirick, O’Connell, DeMallie & Lougee, LLP.
Twitter: @matt_r_fisher

While home on paternity leave taking care of my baby daughter, I’ve had a fair amount fo time to think about different issues, which means I think about HIPAA. The fact that my mind turns to HIPAA on my free time is probably the subject of a different post, but, for now, I am wondering what enforcement actions will look like under a new administration. Continue reading on…

Breaking Down Interoperability Barriers to Unlock the Potential of Technology Innovations
By Diana Nole, CEO of the Health Division of Wolters Kluwer
Twitter: @Wolters_Kluwer

When it comes to electronic health record systems (EHRs), most would agree that they have failed to live up to their potential for delivering greater efficiencies, reduced healthcare costs, and improved care quality. The primary reason these intended benefits have not materialized is lack of interoperability; when EHRs are not seamlessly interoperable with other health IT systems, they cannot be leveraged to improve clinical outcomes and reduce costs. Continue reading on…

Tech’s Crucial Role in Quality Payment Program Success
By Justin Barnes, Partner, iHealth Innovations
Twitter: @HITAdvisor
Twitter: @RevenueSherpa

The path to value-based care and reporting under the new Quality Payment Program is undeniably paved in patient data. As clinicians dive into first-year monitoring and reporting under MACRA, the strength of their technical infrastructure will directly impact one’s ability to successfully meet reporting requirements and outcome improvement and resource utilization targets. Continue reading on…

Clinical Process Measurement
By Patrick Yoder, PharmD, Co-founder and CEO of LogicStream Health
Twitter: @Logic_Stream

Quality improvement is not a process that has a beginning or end. It is a crucial component to become a Highly Reliable Organization (HRO). Effectively tackling quality improvement requires a sustainable and scalable way to standardize, monitor and ultimately drive adoption, which improves clinical processes across the entire enterprise. By facilitating new ways to measure clinician workflows, Clinical Process Measurement (CPM) drives a deeper understanding of the impact those processes have on outcomes and how they propel highly reliable healthcare. Continue reading on…

Using Public-Private Partnerships to Bring Interoperability to Individuals
By Dr. Vindell Washington / Former National Coordinator for Health IT, Tricia Lee Wilkins, Pharm.D., Ph.D. / Pharmacy Advisor and Health IT Specialist, and Aisha Hasan / Senior Advisor to the National Coordinator
Twitter: @ONC_HealthIT

Over the past 8 years, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) – in collaboration with our federal partners and the private sector – has ushered in an era of widespread health information technology (IT) adoption and use throughout the country. This historic advancement has set the stage for us to transition our focus to the seamless and secure sharing of electronic health information. Continue reading on…

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