The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology has renamed its proposed Health IT Safety Center, a public-private collaboration meant to help reduce potential HIT-related adverse events and medical errors.

ONC is now calling it a “Safety Collaboratory” rather than a safety center. Andrew Gettinger, M.D., ONC’s chief medical information officer and acting director of the Office of Clinical Quality and Safety, made the announcement during Tuesday’s HIT Policy Committee meeting. Gettinger told committee members that the term “collaboratory” was coined in 1989 by computer scientist William Wulf, referring to the concept of a “center without walls” in which the nation’s researchers could perform their research without regard to physical location.

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