AMIA supports draft ONC interoperability framework

The American Medical Informatics Association supports the ONC's draft framework for interoperability standards, but says some of the proposed measures would put a reporting burden on clinicians, according to a July 20 letter to ONC head Donald Rucker, MD.

The ONC's "Proposed Interoperability Standards Measurement Framework" was released in April. It detailed an industrywide measurement framework to assess the implementation and use of healthcare interoperability standards. The framework's goal is to help health IT developers, healthcare exchange organizations and healthcare providers move toward uniform interoperability.

The AMIA supports the first of the two objectives laid out in the framework, which focus on the implementation of standards in a health IT product. The second objective — which outlines the use and customization of the standards — requires more elaboration, according to the AMIA.  

The organization worries the second objective will rely heavily on clinical end-user reporting, leading to a reporting burden for physicians. The AMIA recommends that measurement and measure reporting should be automated wherever possible, initially targeting high-value standards and use cases.

"We underscore the need to have the benefits of measurement outweigh the costs, and that there is sufficient effort to develop and implement automated measurement solutions. As the work moves forward, we urge ONC to be very mindful of the potential burdens associated with additional measurement and to carefully balance the burdens of measurement with expected benefits," wrote Douglas Fridsma, MD, PhD, president and CEO of AMIA.

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