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Successful Public Health IT Project Collaboration

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Successful Public Health IT Project Collaboration

Most public health information technology projects rely on strong collaboration to be successful, especially across vendor-client boundaries. Here are some successful strategies: ...

Most public health information technology projects rely on strong collaboration to be successful, especially across vendor-client boundaries. Here are some successful strategies:

  • Clear vision. A concise and clear vision focused on public health outcomes is embraced and articulated by all participants in the project.
  • Strong support and leadership from senior management. Without strong support from senior management, projects are rarely given the priority to enable success. This prioritization includes both agency and vendor commitment.
  • Funding. Both external (Federal) and internal (state/local) funding need to be committed to enable success, though long-term sustainability is an ongoing issue.

Consumer Access to Health Care Data: Still a Challenge

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Consumer Access to Health Care Data: Still a Challenge

Consumers continue to be frustrated with lack of access to their healthcare data, even as wearables and other consumer-targeted devices and services continue to sprout. Recently, O ...

Consumers continue to be frustrated with lack of access to their healthcare data, even as wearables and other consumer-targeted devices and services continue to sprout. Recently, ONC launched a Consumer Health Data Aggregator Challenge to spur the development of new applications and partnerships to provide aggregated health data to patients. While the financial “prize” for this effort is meager, recognition by ONC might be the real brass ring. This challenge focuses on the use of FHIR exclusively to support interoperability between systems and present data to consumers. I suspect that applicants will have some trouble meeting the requirements of the challenge effectively, and this is indicative of the broader challenge in supporting this type of data access.

HLN at 2016 OSEHRA Open Source Summit

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HLN at 2016 OSEHRA Open Source Summit

HLN participated in the 2016 OSEHRA Open Source Summit in Bethesda, MD. Our work bringing the ICE immunization forecasting system to VA-VistA is a major effort for the next several ...

HLN participated in the 2016 OSEHRA Open Source Summit in Bethesda, MD. Our work bringing the ICE immunization forecasting system to VA-VistA is a major effort for the next several years and a conspicuous activity at the Summit. Mike Suralik, HLN’s ICE Program Manager, participated in a panel at the Summit as part of the OSEHRA Immunization Open Source Project Group.

And congratulations to our VA and WorldVistA colleagues who swept the 2016 OSEHRA Leadership Awards with their immunization-related work!

HLN at 2016 CSTE Annual Conference

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HLN at 2016 CSTE Annual Conference

HLN attended the 2016 Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) Annual Conference and will be involved in several presentations, including: Demonstration of the  ...

HLN attended the 2016 Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) Annual Conference and will be involved in several presentations, including:

Or Maybe It’s Siloed Workflow?

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Or Maybe It’s Siloed Workflow?

In an earlier post I wondered whether public health’s siloed systems might not be more appropriately thought of as siloed data. But after attend a meeting of the Joint Public Healt ...

In an earlier post I wondered whether public health’s siloed systems might not be more appropriately thought of as siloed data. But after attend a meeting of the Joint Public Health Informatics Taskforce (JPHIT) I am wondering whether the issue is really siloed workflow.

In public health, data is used to support specific programs, and systems develop to provide a means to collect, analyze, and disseminate this data. Individuals in the programs define the data sets and create systems that support specific protocols and activities that are considered unique to the program area. This is often the result of increased specialization in both the clinical and epidemiological practice and can result in processes that are at their core quite similar being described in diverse ways. Data definitions, codes and terminology sets often also evolve in a divergent way when often they are describing the same qualities or attributes, often about the same patients, conditions, or environment.

Public health agencies need to focus on the commonalities across their programs rather than on the differences. Existing and emerging standards activities should help promote a convergence of systems, data, and workflow to increase interoperability, reduce redundancy, and promote sharable, reusable, cheaper system components. As collaboration among programs and agencies moves some implementations to shared solutions or cloud-based implementations, public health needs to be careful not to create a set of siloed platforms that provide parallel, non-interoperating services to the same agencies.