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ONC Outlines Vision for Quality Improvement through Health IT

November 14, 2014
by Gabriel Perna
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The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) released a paper this week that outlines its vision for using health IT to improve the quality of healthcare in the U.S. 
Jacob Reider, M.D., the outgoing deputy national coordinator and Capt. Alicia Morton, R.N., director of the ONC’s health IT certification program released the paper in a blog post. The 19-page paper, Health IT Enabled Quality Improvement: A Vision to Achieve Better Health and Health Care, details how ONC plans to combine clinical decision support (CDS) and clinical quality measurement (CQM) tools to enable quality improvement. The key to this, ONC says, is an interoperable infrastructure. 
Specifically, ONC says quality improvement through health IT requires use of the same technical standards; use of certification and testing to ensure improvement tools are being used correctly; strong privacy and security protections; a business, clinical, and regulatory environment to supports the use of quality improvement tools and exchange of health information; and a set of rules of engagement and governance that facilitates quality improvement. 
“We will work collaboratively and transparently with stakeholders to develop shared national goals for three, six and ten-year timeframes that will serve as milestones on our shared journey to achieve this vision as an integral part of the nation’s future,” Reider and Morton wrote in the blog post.

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