New ONC chief offers hints at policy priorities

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In his first blog post since being named to lead the Office of National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC), Donald Rucker, MD, focused mostly on his own “journey” through medical school, the early days of electronic health records and serving as chief medical officer at Siemens.

He also dropped a few hints as to what his main goals will be at ONC. For instance, he wrote the agency is “shifting its focus to working with industry and the public sector to address” issues surrounding interoperability and usability with EHRs.

“We will focus on improving interoperability so patients can access and move their health records and providers can easily send, receive, and analyze patient data,” Rucker wrote. “We will also prioritize improving EHR technologies and reducing documentation burden, time inefficiencies, and hassle for clinicians, allowing them to focus on their patients rather than their computers.”

Those priorities would be in line with recent legislation like the 21st Century Cures Act and the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA), both of which Rucker mentioned as a focus of ONC’s work.

Read the full blog post at the link below: