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Health 2.0: ONC Pledges to Make Patients Meaningful Users, Too

Gienna Shaw, for HealthLeaders Media, September 29, 2011

Patient engagement is a core piece of meaningful use of electronic health records, Mostashari said. Meaningful use requirements sets the groundwork for "massive liberation of patient data" for patients, providers, developers, and innovators to help patients take better care of themselves, engage more in their care, share information, and help coordinate their care.

"All too often it is the patient who is not just the courier of their records, but the one in the best position to coordinate their care." 

The conference concluded on a patient-centric note, with a "Patients 2.0" panel discussion. Several patients and patient advocates had a chance to ask direct questions—created during a patient crowdsourcing exercise—of Mostashari and Ricciardi.  

Mary Cain, a healthcare technology consultant and one of the patient representatives on the panel, noted that the government has spent $20 billion getting electronic health records into the hands of providers. Where, she asked, is the $20 billion for patients to access and interpret their health data?

Mostashari again pointed to conference attendees. "There's a lot of folks I met today who are creating applications and services and new innovative services for keeping people healthy," he said. "The single most exciting thing I've seen today is you all voting with your feet and your wallets and your investor's wallets that there's going to be a market for keeping people healthy."

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1 comments on "Health 2.0: ONC Pledges to Make Patients Meaningful Users, Too"


@cascadia Sherry Reynolds (9/29/2011 at 2:10 PM)
Actually one of the leading epatient advocates who actually works in health IT - along with Rob Koldner the then head of ONC and some ONC staffers created the position for a national consumer patient advocate but when he left and David Blumenthal, MD was brought in it got put on hold for almost 2 years. David even asked where in the funding legislation (ARRA and HITECH) did it mention a "program" for patients - instead of realizing that everything we do should start with their needs and that patient centered care is a core principal of everything and has been clearly articulated as not only one of the IOM pillars of care but as Berwick (IHI, CMS) has said the foundational piece. ONC missed the chance to embed the patient voice and patient centered design principals in all of their programs and are now playing catchup instead. Unfortunately this can be challenging when the consumer piece is being lead by ONC policy people and lawyers (ie - consumer rep at NeHC) who have never worked in healthcare nor run grass roots political campaigns let alone understand health IT and how transformative it can be. What they need are people who understand grass roots campaigns vs policy as well as people who use and understand technology. In the end however it isnt about "freeing" data or technology but using those tools to design care around the patient.