HHS formalizes health IT coordinator's authority

The Health and Human Services Department has formalized the organization, functions and delegations of authority for the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology. The designation provides the office another layer of permanence.

The office leads the nationwide public-private effort to develop a national health IT infrastructure for the exchange of data such as electronic health records to improve quality of health care, reduce costs and enable consumers to manage their care.

'It gives us official sanction and standing, not only to hire people but to have permanent FTE [full-time equivalent] slots assigned to us. The FTE slots that we have have all been interim,' said National Health IT Coordinator David Brailer in a teleconference with reporters.

HHS announced the formal structure in today'sFederal Register. It will consist of five components:
  • Immediate Office of the National Coordinator

  • Office of Health Information Technology Adoption

  • Office of Interoperability and Standards

  • Office of Programs and Coordination and

  • Office of Policy and Research.

About the Author

Mary Mosquera is a reporter for Federal Computer Week.

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