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Q&A: Farzad Mostashari on Meaningful Use, Privacy

Margaret Dick Tocknell, for HealthLeaders Media, January 10, 2012

HLM: Where will meaningful use be at the end of 2012?

Mostashari: Wildly successful! In the last two years more doctors adopted electronic health records than adopted them in the 20 years before that. Adoption doubled in two years. It's intense.

When you look at gold standard surveys out of the CDC, over half the doctors intend to go for meaningful use and for hospitals it's even higher. If you look at registrations for the meaningful use program, over 100,000 doctors have registered for the program and over half of all hospitals have registered for the program.

They're not doing it for their health. They are doing it because they intend to apply for meaningful use and we intend to help them get there.

HLM: What do you think has been the big hang-up in implementing the exchange of patient information?

Mostashari: It's really three things: reducing the cost of exchange, increasing the value, and creating the preconditions for trust to emerge. The bottom line is that the cost of exchanging patient information has to be less than the value that the provider gets from moving that information. We're trying to reduce the cost of those transactions through standards, so you don't have to build $10,000 or $50,000 interfaces to get through to whoever you want to talk to.

We're getting the industry to come together to create how the information will be packaged, the code systems to be used, and the interfaces and specifications to be used so we're driving down the cost of those standards.

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