ONC’s 2020-2025 Strategic Plan for Health IT
On January 15, 2020, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) released their “2020-2025 Federal Health IT Strategic Plan.” The plan describes the biggest challenges in federal healthcare, followed by the best opportunities, and includes four goals and strategies to address each goal. Comments are due by March 18, 2020.
This plan is consistent with HHS and ONC’s other policy work and goals, so there were few surprises. However, it will confound some readers that there was no mention of the Trusted Exchange Framework and Common Agreement (TEFCA), only a general commitment to “[s]upport a common agreement for nationwide exchange of health information that drives interoperability, supports federal agencies’ strategies, and promotes effective governance.” For more background on TEFCA, you can read our previous posts here.
ONC describes the biggest challenges in healthcare as:
1. Increasing rates of behavioral health issues
2. Poor health outcomes
3. Access to technology
4. Access to care
5. Increasing healthcare spending
They describe the opportunities as:
1. Patient empowerment
2. Movement to value-based care
3. New technologies and data availability
4. Achieving interoperability
5. Reducing regulatory and administrative burden
6. Health data privacy and security
The four goals, each with a series of objectives, create a framework for driving ONC’s 2020-2025 strategy:
1. Promote health and wellness
2. Enhance the delivery and experience of care
3. Build a secure, data-driven ecosystem to accelerate research and transformation
4. Connect healthcare and data through interoperable health IT infrastructure
The strategy document is clean, easy to read, and reasonably concise. While we await the pending final interoperability rules, we can assume that they will align with these goals and objectives.