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HCIC was founded in 1990 to assist organizations in health care information technology management. HCIC has evolved into a healthcare consulting organization that focuses on optimizing information resources, people, systems, and technology via demonstrated expertise in value based planning, systems management, organizational readiness assessment, process improvement, healthcare standards advisement, health information exchange, and technology integration.

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Truven Top 100 Hospital Scores Measure 'Leadership Impact'

Congratulations to our clients Virginia Hospital Center and MedStar St. Mary's who made the top 100 list. The Truven list is different than other scorecards as it is designed to measure "the impact of hospital leaders, and what they emphasize within their organizations providing a longer-term picture of the impact of leadership in driving improvement forward."

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Hot Topics

May 2015

Interoperability

A growing number of indicators suggest the next hot topic after Meaningful Use will be interoperability. Long a Holy Grail of sorts for the healthcare IT industry, interoperability is getting renewed attention. We may actually see some significant activity in the months ahead.

Prior to the 2015 HIMSS conference, the Office of the National Coordinator prepared a 10-year interoperability plan, 2015 Interoperability Standards Advisory, stating what they see as the best available healthcare information exchange standards and implementation specifications to facilitate health data information exchange. The draft roadmap calls for a public/private partnership to create a “governance framework” for health information exchange. It also calls for more work to be done developing and harmonizing interoperability standards.

In addition, the vendor exhibit area at the 2015 HIMSS conference was overflowing with companies touting interoperability – the topic was more on display than it ever has been before. In the words of one attendee, it looks like Wall Street has gotten the message!

Finally, the Meaningful Use Stage 3 regulations are now out in draft form; it seems clear that, read in conjunction with the ONC Roadmap, the combined rules will add the weight of the federal government to interoperability in a way that has never happened before.

If all this were not enough, a bill currently being considered by the US House Energy and Commerce Committee entitled “21st Century Cures” contains proposed language that may have the effect of mandating use of standards for certain transactions. While the final form of this bill isn’t clear, there is much discussion around how (and whether) the federal government can encourage or enforce the use of standards for transmitting data.

As always, comments are welcome.

Hot Topics in Health Care is a quarterly feature produced by Jim Oakes, Principal, Health Care Information Consultants.