HIMSS Releases Top Health IT Policy Priorities for Congress

The Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society has named interoperability, cybersecurity and telehealth as the top policy priorities that Congress should address in the next year, Healthcare IT News reports.

Priority Details

The priorities were included in HIMSS' annual list of "congressional asks."

In terms of interoperability, HIMSS said lawmakers should:

  • Lift the ban on the use of federal funding to develop a unique patient identifier; and
  • Direct the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT to modify its electronic health record certification program to include "rigorous interoperability testing" (Sullivan, Healthcare IT News, 9/9).

In its cybersecurity ask, HIMSS called for:

  • An "information sharing pipeline" to share cyberthreat data from the government to the private sector in "(near) real time" (Tahir et al., "Morning eHealth," Politico, 9/10); and
  • A "voluntary, national health-specific IT data security framework" that includes best security practices and support implementation to bolster cybersecurity (Healthcare IT News, 9/9).

As for telehealth, HIMSS said Congress should:

  • Allow for telehealth to occur in various forms;
  • Eliminate geographic originating site restrictions; and
  • Permit cross-state licensing ("Morning eHealth," Politico, 9/10).

According to Healthcare IT News, HIMSS plans to share the policy asks with lawmakers during National Health IT Week, scheduled for Oct. 5 through Oct. 9 (Healthcare IT News, 9/9).

Source: iHealthBeat, Thursday, September 10, 2015

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