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The four Health IT awardees will address development and testing for healthcare

The HHS Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) recently announced four awards totaling over $2.7 million to projects addressing the greatest healthcare data sharing challenges.

Health IT

The awards were part of the Leading Edge Acceleration Projects in Health IT (LEAP) program and will fund initiatives in hopes of advancing opportunities for the adoption and use of health IT standards across the healthcare sector.

“The LEAP program was created to bring future-focused outcomes closer to the present. This third cohort will inform the implementation and refinement of standards, methods, and innovative techniques to create breakthroughs in how we approach health care and research,” Steve Posnack, Deputy National Coordinator for Health IT, said in the announcement.

The four LEAP in Health IT awardees will address development and testing for data sharing functionalities to support clinical care, research, and improved outcomes, HHS said.

The three focal points of the projects will be to advance registry infrastructure for a modern application programming interface-based health IT ecosystem, develop health IT tools for scaling health research, and integrate healthcare and human services data to support improved outcomes.

HHS highlighted the four 2020 awardees.

The first awardee was Chesapeake Regional Information System for our Patients Inc. (CRISP).

With the American College of Cardiology, CRISP is developing and testing data sharing functionality for health systems participating in the national cardiovascular disease registries of the ACC.

CRISP, along with ACC, will advance the health IT ecosystem through the accelerated adoption of modern standards, such as fast healthcare interoperability research (FHIR), both in the “acquisition of clinical data for registry submission as well as the subsequent use of clinical data to improve care decisions.”

MedStar Health Research Institute was the second organization awarded for their efforts to evolve digital architecture to scale health research.

MedStar will aim to better understand the current state of open source, health IT tools, the announcement explained.

“Specifically, the program project will demonstrate use of individual bulk FHIR data extraction to support needed research functionality,” HHS said.

MedStar will enhance the project by collaborating with Georgetown University’s Innovation Center for Biomedical Informatics (ICBI), the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP), HealthLab, and Asymmetrik.

Also in the second area of awards was the Children’s Hospital Corporation, which aims to research sidecar for a SMART learning healthcare system.

Children’s Hospital will partner with Yale University and Yale-New Haven Health to develop an FHIR-based platform that leverages bulk data to support an ecosystem for research and learning.

Additional tools will be developed and tested to allow users to explain data for analytics, de-identify data, and query cohorts.

The last area of awards was to the Missouri Department of Mental Health (DMH) and the Division of Developmental Disabilities (DD).

The funding will help DMH and DD advance their value-based payments model with foundational technical infrastructure that will integrate structured components.

This move will further support person-centered planning, reporting, population health, and data sharing across healthcare-, home-, and community-based services providers, HHS said.

It is specifically intended for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities while testing and adopting the electronic long-term services and support standard.

Prashant Tambe
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