ONC Listens: BluePrint at ONC Innovations Seminar

ONC Listens: BluePrint at ONC Innovations Seminar
On October 25, 2010, the ONC Innovations Seminar was led by BluePrint Healthcare IT in Washington, DC. The one-hour seminar entitled “HITECH in New Jersey: A View from the Private Sector” was part of a series featuring people from outside the Office of National Coordinator (ONC) for Health IT sharing their experiences and ideas with the Office. This post reports on how three of my BluePrint colleagues and I got to speak with about twenty members of ONC (including several on a conference line) and share our experiences.

ONC Innovations Seminar
Sachin Jain MD, MBA, Special Assistant to David Blumenthal; and Wil Yu, Special Assistant for Innovation to the National Coordinator, invited the BluePrint team to Washington, DC to lead Monday’s ONC Innovation Seminar. Members of BluePrint had previously worked with the New Jersey and Delaware Valley HIMSS chapters to invite Jain and Yu to speak and meet with attendees at the chapters’ joint fall conference in Atlantic City in September.

Jain initiated the ONC Innovations Series, which in its official description took “place every one to two weeks (for members of the ONC staff) and will bring in noted experts from the health IT community including technologists, patient and community advocates, grantees, academic researchers, government officials and others.”

Seminar leaders have included Michael Porter (Harvard Business School and thought leader on Competitive Advantage), Mark McClelland (former head of FDA and CMS, now heading the Engleberg Center for Health  Care Reform at Brookings), Peter Pronovost  (Johns Hopkins physician and leader in patient safety), Lonny Reisman (Aetna’s chief medical officer), Richard Baron (Philadelphia area physician with Greenhouse Internists) and Rushika  Fernandopulle (an Atlantic City physician).

Case Studies
Speaking with ONC members at its October 25 seminar, BluePrint used three case studies to illustrate health IT challenges and how it was helping hospitals solve them: fast-tracking meaningful use security risk assessments; developing and implementing a workflow software tool to manage access to enterprise-wide software; and setting up a five-stage security and privacy framework at a community hospital to strengthen physician relationships and foster greater trust with patients. It also described its two-hour seminars offered to hospital leadership to prepare for meaningful use and readiness to receive EHR incentive payments.

BluePrint’s Public Policy Role—New Jersey and beyond
The seminar pointed out the new momentum fostered by New Jersey’s health IT leadership—statewide Health IT Coordinator Colleen Woods and Bill O’Byrne, executive director of NJ-HITEC, the state’s regional extension center. New Jersey submitted its HIE operational plan to ONC in August, and NJ-HITEC kicked off its clinician sign-up program for meaningful use support in October.

Based on working with hospital CIOs, Vikas Khosla, the President and CEO of BluePrint, described the transformation of hospital and multi-hospital system CIOs from systems implementation and management executives to leaders of healthcare change management. Founded in 2003 to advise hospitals and multi-hospital systems on security and privacy issues, BluePrint has taken on a public policy role as well, including producing a series of workshops on HITECH Breach Enforcement in collaboration with NJ HIMSS and having Vikas serve as a subject matter expert for the state HIT Committee on Privacy and Security.

The ONC’s Listening Continues
This seminar series demonstrates one way ONC listens and learns. Another example, for which registration just opened this week, is the Personal Health Record Roundtable on December 3 in Washington, DC, to be chaired by HHS Chief Privacy Officer Joy Pritts. The roundtable will hear panels of “researchers, legal scholars, and representatives of consumer, patient, and industry organizations” in order to prepare recommendations, as stipulated in HITECH Act,  “related to the application of privacy and security requirements to non-HIPAA Covered Entities, with a focus on personal health record vendors and related service provider.”

To the readers of e-Healthcare Marketing,  who are used to seeing this blogger’s collections of information and reports about Health IT and EHRs, thank you for taking the time to read about  the Washington trip of Vikas Khosla, President and CEO; Gregory Michaels, Director, Security and Compliance Solutions; Mohit Pasricha, Chief Solutions Architect, and me, Mike Squires, Vice President, Strategic Development and Public Policy, BluePrint Healthcare IT www.blueprinthit.com .
Mike Squires

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