ONC Announces Imaging Interoperability Challenge | Healthcare Informatics Magazine | Health IT | Information Technology Skip to content Skip to navigation

ONC Announces Imaging Interoperability Challenge

May 18, 2012
by Gabriel Perna
| Reprints

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) is launching a new Investing in Innovation (i2) Initiative developer contest aimed at improving interoperability among office-based ophthalmic imaging devices, measurement devices, and electronic health records (EHRs). The ONC’s i2 program is a way to promote the use of technology to find solutions that drive better outcomes, engage users in their health, and improve healthcare quality.

According to the ONC, documentation of the typical ophthalmology examination in an EHR is a challenge for providers, “creating barriers to full acceptance and use of EHRs within the medical community.”  The ONC says ophthalmologists use an array of measurement and imaging devices during exams that produce data and images in numerous forms. These are typically stored in databases and file formats with limited connectivity with EHR systems and ophthalmology-specific picture archiving and communication systems (PACS). The contest, called the “Ocular Imaging Challenge,” is a call to application developers that create better interoperability.

The ONC says along with ophthalmology, specialties such as cardiology, physiatry (physical medicine and rehabilitation), and otorhinolaryngology (ear, nose, and throat) encounter the imaging issue as well. Thus, the agency says a successful solution can be expected to have an impact beyond ophthalmology. It also should be capable of converting the output of legacy devices from proprietary formats into vendor-neutral standard formats, archiving data from multiple devices, displaying and allowing the manipulation of images and data for clinicians, and integrating with existing EHRs.

Among the criterion for the contest is breadth of input devices and formats, the usability and interface for image viewing, and integration with existing office systems. 



Cerner Files Protest over $62M EHR Contract Awarded to Epic

Cerner Corp. has filed a protest against rival EHR vendor Epic Systems following an “unfair bidding process and a possible conflict of interest” for a recent IT implementation contract awarded by the University of Illinois (UI) medical center.

NewYork-Presbyterian, Walgreens Partner on Telemedicine Initiative

NewYork-Presbyterian and Walgreens are collaborating to bring expanded access to NewYork-Presbyterian’s healthcare through new telemedicine services, the two organizations announced this week.

ONC Releases Patient Demographic Data Quality Framework

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) developed a framework to help health systems, large practices, health information exchanges and payers to improve their patient demographic data quality.

AMIA, Pew Urge Congress to Ensure ONC has Funding to Implement Cures Provisions

The Pew Charitable Trusts and the American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA) have sent a letter to congressional appropriators urging them to ensure that ONC has adequate funding to implement certain 21st Century Cures Act provisions.

Former Michigan Governor to Serve as Chair of DRIVE Health

Former Michigan Governor John Engler will serve as chair of the DRIVE Health Initiative, a campaign aimed at accelerating the U.S. health system's transition to value-based care.

NJ Medical Group Launches Statewide HIE, OneHealth New Jersey

The Medical Society of New Jersey (MSNJ) recently launched OneHealth New Jersey, a statewide health information exchange (HIE) that is now live.