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ONC Announces Realigned Policy Workgroups

August 4, 2014
by Gabriel Perna
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The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) recently adjusted the workgroups of the Health IT Policy Committee and the Health IT Standards Committee in an effort to ensure they were aligned with its strategic direction. 

The newly devised workgroups were announced in a blog post on ONC's Health IT Buzz Blog from Jodi Daniel, J.D., the Director of Policy and Planning at the ONC. The restructuring is part of a larger effort that began earlier this summer, when Karen DeSalvo, M.D, National Coordinator for Health IT, said the office was realigning as federal funding in health IT infrastructure and program investments were ending.
The new workgroups consist of the following: 
Health IT Strategic Planning and Innovation
Chair: David Lansky
Co-chair: Jennifer Covich
Health IT Implementation, Usability and Safety
Chair: David Bates
Co-chair: Larry Wolf
Interoperability and Health Information Exchange 
Chair: Micky Tripathi
Co-chair: Chris Lehmann
Advanced Health Models and Meaningful Use
Chair: Paul Tang
Co-chair: Joe Kimura
Privacy and Security
Chair: Deven McGraw
Co-chair: Stanley Crosley
Consumer Perspective and Engagement
Chair: Christine Bechtel
Co-chair: Neil Calman
Health IT Standards Committee Workgroups and Chairs:
Steering Committee
Chair: Jacob Reider
Co-chair: John Halamka
Semantics and Standards
Co-chair: Jamie Ferguson
Co-chair: Becky Kush
Implementation, Certification and Testing
Co-chair: Liz Johnson
Co-chair: Cris Ross
Architecture, Services, and Application Programming Interfaces (APIs)
Chair: David McCallie
Co-chair: Arien Malec
Content Standards
Chair: Andy Wiesenthal
Co-chair: Rich Elmore
Transport and Security
Chair:  Dixie Baker
Co-chair:  Lisa Gallagher
They also established two workgroups, one which will "synthesize" feedback on the JASON report, an influential whitepaper that concluded the current lack of interoperability among the data resources for electronic health records (EHRs) is a major obstacle to the effective exchange of health information. That committee will be headed by Tripathi, of the Massachusetts eHealth Collaborative and David McCallie, of the Cerner Medical Informatics Institute. Another subgroup was established to "identify the substance, scope, and process for the development of “rules of the road” needed for information to flow efficiently across networks." 
"We are pleased by the commitment and the hard work that all of our HITPC, HITSC and workgroup members are doing to help improve the health and health care of everyone in the U.S. It is their expertise and knowledge that guides those of us at ONC down the path to interoperability, and better health and care for all patients," Daniel wrote in the blog. 

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