Healthcare IT and interoperability

Tuesday - 4/2/2013, 10:52pm EDT

Dr. Doug Fridsma, chief science officer, ONC

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April 2, 2013 -- Many listeners are familiar with EHRs (Electronic Health Records) in their professional capacity or as a patient.

You may not realize how difficult it is for enterprise systems to be able to move information between hospitals, private practices, and reference laboratories.

Today's interview with Doctor Doug Fridsma takes a look at healthcare IT interoperability.

He is the chief science officer for the ONC (Office of the National Coordinator or Health Information Technology) at the Department of Health and Human Services.

During the interview he gives a simple definition of interoperability and how it can break down barriers in sharing health information.

Additionally, this information exchange can help reduce redundant records, improve speed of information retrieval, and make the entire process flow in an efficient manner.

Dr. Fridsma emphasizes that this process must take place with respect to patient's privacy and involvement.

He is optimistic on the adoption rate of EHR's - in fact, he estimates that by the end of 2013 there will be an 85 percent adoption rate for EHRs among physicians in the United States.

Other topics include the success of the Blue Button initiative, mobile devices, and Health Information Exchanges.