- On Monday morning, national coordinator for health information technology Karen DeSalvo kicked off what is proving to be a very IT-centric American Health Information Management Association conference in San Diego.
- DeSalvo announced that the reboot of the Federal Health IT Strategic Plan will be available for public comment over the winter and encouraged all industry stakeholders to provide feedback. Although DeSalvo was frank that the industry as yet lacks the framework to protect consumer privacy in the face of a flood of new data sources, she said the goal of the plan is to first connect the flow of information within the healthcare system, then pull in other data sources.
- DeSalvo also discussed the evolution of Meaningful Use Stage 3 requirements, emphasizing that that the program should meet the policy goals of advancement without "crushing medicine."
DeSalvo also touched briefly on the agency's recently-announced plans to collaborate with the US Postal Service to develop health record interoperability tools.
"They have hundreds of thousands of employees for whom they are making a personal health record and a portal so they can access their health information," DeSalvo said in a discussion panel last week. "They also have a potential platform to create a way that every American has an identifier, like an address they registered online."
DeSalvo was followed by fellow keynote speaker Eric Topol, who provided an overview of a number of new tech products in the healthcare space that Topol emphasized will help lower costs and improve efficiency of care. According to Topol, traditional hospital labs are in "serious trouble" as a result of companies like Theranos.