“America’s Physician Groups (APG) applauds the release of the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology’s (ONC) proposed rule around the use and exchange of electronic health information (EHI). This rule puts power back in the hands of patients by streamlining their ability to access health information literally from the palm of their hand. It also maintains strong protections to ensure the privacy of patient EHI.
“Having this information readily accessible can help patients and providers make more informed choices about their care more quickly. And it can help preserve valuable healthcare resources by reducing waste, such as duplicate tests and unnecessary procedures. Giving patients secure access to their own EHI is another step toward a coordinated healthcare system geared toward driving down cost and improving the health of the population.
“APG also today sent a response to a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)Request for Information (RFI) on modifying the 1996 Health Insurance and Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). While we fully support the need to protect patient health information, advances in both medicine and technology require modifications to current law so that regulatory obstacles do not impede provider access to the information needed to provide value-based and coordinated care.
“Technology is a powerful tool which can help improve the quality and efficiency of healthcare. And more and more, patients want easy access to their health information. But we must make sure we balance access to information with data privacy and protection. That’s why we look forward to continuing to work with Congress and the Administration to find ways to harness the power of technology while protecting patient privacy.”
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