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Health IT policy adjustments, and other news from

Health IT policy officials have begun to see a realignment of priorities, issues and work, causing federal committees and workgroups to redirect their efforts accordingly. The workgroup on health information exchange has updated its agenda to address these changing policy needs.

Information-sharing initiatives, such as the Nationwide Health Information Network (NHIN) Direct project, have prompted some of these shifts in health IT policy priorities. According to David Lansky, president and CEO of the Pacific Business Group on Health, and chairman of the Health IT Policy Committee’s NHIN workgroup, “Some of the questions we didn’t know could be triggered by the [NHIN] Direct project were triggered.”

Check out the rest of last week’s news stories from

Why SaaS EHR systems appeal to small group practices, solo physicians — Call it SaaS EHR, ASP EHR, or cloud computing; for physicians: Having someone else host an electronic health record system can be a viable choice for HITECH Act compliance.

Patient engagement leads to more effective use of health IT — The federal government wants meaningful use of health IT, but surveys show it won’t happen unless patient engagement improves. This podcast examines what doctors can do.

Using health IT standards to address EHR data challenges — Dr. John Halamka talks about some of the specific challenges involved with using EHR data to report quality measures, and how health IT standards are evolving to address them.

HITECH Act incentives still confuse some providers — New legislation aims to clarify who is eligible for HITECH Act incentives, but doctors say the law still doesn’t go far enough to fund and promote EHR implementation.

Will state HIEs replace current RHIOs? — At the recent SearchHealthIT virtual trade show, one CTO remarked that he thought the concept of the health information exchange, or HIE, could replace the regional health information organization (RHIO) as we know it.

Health IT jobs No. 1 choice for college graduates — A new study shows health information technology is the hottest career choice for college graduates.

Poll: EHR use would be quite helpful for parents — Most parents say it would be helpful to use online technology to coordinate health care for their children, according to a national poll.

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