Joy Pritts is leaving the Office of the National Coordinator after serving as the agency’s first Chief Privacy Officer for more than four years.
Pritts’ departure was announced in an email from Karen DeSalvo, M.D., the National Coordinator for Health IT, to staff members. Pritts and DeSalvo will work together to identify an acting CPO and find a permanent replacement.
According to DeSalvo, Pritts was going to stay with the ONC through the transition from former Coordinator Farzad Mostashari, M.D. Interestingly though, in a recent announcement of agency realignment, Pritts name was mentioned as the Chief Privacy Officer going forward.
DeSalvo said Pritts was the ONC’s “point person on privacy and security,” as well as a “key advisor” to (former) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. Over the course of her four-year tenure, she led the development of regulations that give patients direct access to their lab test results.
“Joy and her team have made great strides in furthering policy and technology that improves individuals’ ability to choose when and how their health information may be electronically exchanged,” DeSalvo wrote in the email, adding that because of Pritts the Secretary’s “Strategic Initiatives” include a distinct initiative addressing privacy and security.
Before coming to ONC, Pritts was an assistant research professor at Georgetown University’s Health Policy Institute.