Officials and industry stakeholders leading the health IT efforts for the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) were given their marching orders for managing the new tasks, including electronic enrollment in health insurance, required by the health reform law.
During a teleconference, David Blumenthal, head of ONC, provided members of the Health IT Policy Committee more information about the “demanding, complicated task” they’ll be doing to develop standards for helping people enroll electronically in federal health insurance programs. He had mentioned the order briefly at a previous meeting.
The policy committee and its companion board, the Health IT Standards Committee, will form a joint workgroup to study where members of the public come into contact with governmental agencies, Blumenthal said. The workgroup will decide how best to standardize electronic enrollment at each of those points.
This means looking beyond health into the social services: All governmental agencies — from the states’ motor vehicle departments to the Department of Health & Human Service’s Administration for Children and Families — fall under the category.
And the clock is ticking: The committees had 180 days from March 23 to submit their recommendations.