The successor to David Blumenthal, M.D., who has announced he'll resign as National Coordinator for Health Information Technology this spring, will have a lot of work to do when it comes to protecting the privacy and security of healthcare information.
Federal authorities need to develop and disseminate best practices for matching patients to all their records, especially when electronic health records are exchanged, the Privacy and Security Tiger Team recommended Wednesday.
A universal exchange language, as proposed by a presidential council, is far from a panacea for ensuring electronic health records interoperability and easing the secure exchange of data, a diverse coalition says.
On Jan. 14, a new workgroup advising federal regulators dug into the difficult task of figuring out whether a presidential council's recommendations for electronic health record interoperability are feasible.
A presidential council's call for creation of a universal exchange language based on XML as a way to make electronic health records systems interoperable and ease the secure exchange of data is overly simplistic and impractical, some critics say.
Healthcare privacy and security issues rose to the forefront in 2010 thanks, in large part, to the HITECH Act, which led to many new regulations as well as a public list of major health information breaches.