Wednesday, April 5, 2017

New HHS post raises questions about ONC's future | Healthcare Dive

ONC (Office of the National Coordinator was originally initiated by former President George W. Bush by Executive Order. President George W. Bush created the position of National Coordinator on April 27, 2004 through Executive Order 13335.[1][5] Congress later mandated ONC in the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.[6]

Recent changes proposed, to integrate and strengthen ONCs operations

The Office of the National Coordinator for Healthcare Information Technology is poised to name former Siemens Chief Medical Officer Donald Rucker, MD, national coordinator.

ONC retires two committees; Fleming will report to ONC chief

  • HHS Secretary Tom Price named former Louisiana congressman John Fleming to be deputy assistant secretary for health technology, raising questions about the future of the Office of National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC), Healthcare Finance News reports.
  • President Donald Trump’s budget proposal makes no mention of ONC but Fleming told Politico that, “They may be reorganizing.” 
  • In his new post, Fleming said he will work on issues related to technology and the practice of medicine, which includes pushing for policies that encourage physician use of technology and removing regulatory barriers, according to the Times-Picayune. 
  • Two influential committees formed a few years after the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology was created in 2004 disbanded on Thursday, officials announced at a joint meeting of the Health IT policy and standards committees.
    The members of the Health Information Technology Policy Committee and the Healthcare IT Standards Committee will soon be replaced by a new entity dubbed the Health Information Technology Advisory Committee.
    Also announced Thursday, new HHS Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health Technology Reform John Fleming will be reporting to ONC Acting National Coordinator for Health Information Technology Jon White, MD. “John is part of the team,” White told the committees. Fleming served as representative for Louisiana's 4th congressional district from 2009 to 2016.

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