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ONC Will Accept Applications for New Patient Engagement Workgroups

January 4, 2013
by Rajiv Leventhal
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The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) is now accepting applications for potential membership for two new health IT federal advisory committee workgroups focused on patient engagement.  Applications will be accepted through January 14, 2013.

ONC announced the new workgroups by explaining, “In an effort to reach out to real flesh-and-blood patients and consumers and help them understand the benefits of using electronic health records, our Federal Advisory Committees have formed a pair of new work groups: the HIT Policy Committee's Consumer Empowerment Workgroup and the HIT Standards Committee's Consumer Technology Workgroup.”

  The Health IT Policy Committee Consumer Empowerment Workgroup will be charged with providing recommendations on policy issues and opportunities for strengthening the ability of consumers, patients, and lay caregivers to manage health and health care for themselves or others. Examples of issues to be covered include patient generation of their health data, incorporating patient preferences into care plans, and new types/sources of patient data.

  The Health IT Standards Committee Consumer Technology Workgroup will be charged with providing recommendations on standards and interoperability issues and opportunities related to strengthening the ability of consumers, patients, and lay caregivers to manage health and health care for themselves or others. The workgroup will provide input as needed to the HITPC Consumer Empowerment Workgroup or the Meaningful Use Workgroup. Examples of issues to be addressed include portability of patient data, patient access to and generation of their health data, and incorporating patient preferences for a variety of issues, such as care plans.

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