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CIOs to Trump: Ditch Meaningful Use

By smace@healthleadersmedia.com  
   November 14, 2016

Healthcare CIOs describe their wishes for the incoming president. Among them: National data standards, stronger data security, and continuing efforts to advance technology.

Scuttling meaningful use for hospitals, continuing with value-based payment efforts, and using the most advanced technology available are some of the nuggets of advice some healthcare CIOs have for President-Elect Donald Trump.

"Stop MU and redirect resources focused on the program," advises Marc Probst, CIO of Intermountain Healthcare in Salt Lake City. "Any value that potentially came from MU is now over."

Probst, an original member of the Health IT Policy Committee of the Office of the National Coordinator, adds that "the check-the-box approach to HIT is severely limiting innovation, frustrating caregivers and increasing costs. [It's] time to let providers and other HIT organizations figure out for themselves how to best utilize the EMR technology and get value from their investments."

Probst adds that the Trump administration should focus government health IT spending on "issues they can help with, such as national data standards and information security strategies."

Other items on his priority list for the Trump Administration include passing a bill through Congress to create true semantic interoperability of EHR systems and data. Probst, the current chair of the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives, says the organization has developed a draft bill focused on this issue.

Probst also wants to see less regulation of digital healthcare technologies such as telehealth. "Regulation inhibiting expansion of tele-health use or payment for tele-health services is hurting healthcare," he says.

Regardless of political events in Washington, healthcare leaders must focus on already-identified high priorities – improving quality, safety, and efficiency, says John Halamka, CIO at Beth Israel Deaconness Medical Center in Boston.

"In my conversations with Washington DC career staff (not political appointees), there is a sense that the Quality Payment Program will go forward as written," Halamka says.

Scott Mace is the former senior technology editor for HealthLeaders Media. He is now the senior editor, custom content at H3.Group.


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