ONC launches eHealth resource site

Addresses laws, policies and issues related to health information exchange
By Erin McCann
10:10 AM
Joy Pritts

For healthcare providers and organizations looking to brush up on laws and policies surrounding electronic health information exchange, or wanting some tips on patient eConsent engagement, look no further.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Wednesday launched a meaningful consent online resource to help providers effectively engage patients in choosing how they want their electronic patient health information shared.  

The site addresses laws, policies and issues related to health information exchange, and includes strategies and tools that can be used to spur patient engagement and further educate patients, officials said. 

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[See also: ONC tackles patient matching problem.]

The site includes background, lessons learned, videos and customizable tools from the eConsent pilot project that was completed by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology in March 2013. The pilot project tested the use of tablet computers to inform patients about options available to them when they consider whether to electronically share their health information through HIE.

"As patients become more engaged in their healthcare, it’s vitally important that they understand more about various aspects of their choices when it relates to sharing their health in the electronic health information exchange environment," said Joy Pritts, ONC’s chief privacy officer, in a Sept. 17 news release.

Officials say the meaningful consent site builds upon the 2011 recommendations from ONC’s Health Information Technology Policy Committee, which called on ONC to inform, collect and evaluate the information patients need to make an informed choice about electronic exchange of their health information.

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