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MU Final Rules a 'Roadmap' Not a Checklist, Mostashari Says

Margaret Dick Tocknell, for HealthLeaders Media, June 28, 2011

During a question and answer period Mostashari was asked if patient care was headed toward something that "won't work in the end." The questioner noted that "we are basing all of this on the assumption that you can take pieces of information from all these different records, from all these different doctors who have all these different views of the patients and put them together. That might work with an MRI but what about allergies and medications that are patient-specific and can change overtime? It's going to be difficult to weave this all together unless we put it all in the hands of our patients."

Mostashari replied that the questioner's "concern that we going on a path that will be difficult to retreat from is really important. But what are the options? We can do nothing or we can make our best guess at what is the right thing to do. Another option is to make your best guess but recognize that you are probably wrong and try to build in a way that's sensible enough but not overly specific so it can move us forward and yet accommodate a variety of future scenarios."

He offered the health information exchange as an example of something that needs to accommodate what can be done in the future, including personal health records and community health records. "We should take a few steps and see where we are then take a few more steps and re-assess our position. We shouldn't box ourselves into one system."

In closing, Mostashari asked the audience to hold the federal government accountable to make sure it was as "coordinated, as aligned, and as effective as we need to be."

See Also:
ONC Names Mostashari National Coordinator for HIT
Mostashari: We need a better marketplace
Only 13 RHIOs Meet Meaningful Use Criteria
AMA, others advise HHS to clarify meaningful use regs


Margaret Dick Tocknell is a reporter/editor with HealthLeaders Media.
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