The Office of the National Coordinator for HIT has extended to Jan. 19 its deadline for public comment on a call from the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology to rapidly revamp how health information is exchanged. In particular, ONC seeks comment on how a quick transition in HIE policies and technologies would affect Stage 2 meaningful use criteria.

The President's advisors recommend development and use of a "universal exchange language" to facilitate health data exchange while enhancing the privacy and security of health information (see story). This type of language breaks data into individual units of data accompanied by a "metadata tag" with instructions on how the data is to be used.

Among other areas, ONC seeks comment on standards and processes to support metadata and tagged data elements, ways to rapidly develop and use the standards and processes, transition challenges, associated policy actions, and lessons learned in other industries using universal exchange languages. To comment, click here.

--Joseph Goedert


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