Last week, the Health IT Standards Committee discussed specific elements of a potential governance structure for the Nationwide Health Information Network, Healthcare IT News reports (Mosquera, Healthcare IT News, 5/29).
NwHIN is a national health IT infrastructure that aims to help health care providers exchange data. The network started as a conceptual framework, then evolved into a set of data exchange standards and later was leveraged for pilot testing.
Earlier this month, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT issued a request for information on the creation of a governance structure for NwHIN (iHealthBeat, 5/11).
As part of the request, ONC is seeking input on the development of a program to allow groups that "facilitate electronic health information exchange" to show that they meet ONC's conditions for trusted exchange.
According to National Coordinator for Health IT Farzad Mostashari, a "fair degree of specificity" in technical standards will be needed for such a program to operate effectively.
Details of the Discussion
The RFI asks for input from the Standards Committee and other groups about the entities that should be allowed to participate in NwHIN, the rules for participation and other issues.
During last week's meeting, the Standards Committee discussed details about:
- Conditions for trusted exchange; and
- NwHIN validated entities, or NVE (Conn, Modern Healthcare, 5/25).
John Halamka -- committee co-chair and CIO of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston -- said an organization could be certified as an NVE in a similar way that electronic health record systems are certified. An NVE designation would mean that an organization is trusted to handle patient data and participate in NwHIN (Healthcare IT News, 5/29).