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Congressional Hearings on Meaningful Use – Do They Understand Health IT - Some Members Have Left Home Wireless Networks Un

Posted Jul 21 2010 10:58am

I read these types of things all the time and it makes me wonder where the level of consumer IT knowledge is with our lawmakers so I hope they understand what is being done here.  If they want to make sure they get their money’s worth, it helps to understand the project. 

For some image examples you can go back to January of 2009 and read my post on the Senate testimonies for stimulus money for medical records.  It was the Senate’s own video and you can’t make this stuff up.  Kaiser and Microsoft explain what a PHR is to a group that has no clue.  I looked for the video and it has been removed as perhaps it was embarrassing?  I don’t know but the Senate video that captured the entire process is gone. 

Jack Cochran, Executive Director, The Permanente Federation, Oakland, CA
Janet Corrigan, President, The National Quality Forum, Washington, DC
Valerie Melvin, Director of Information Technology, The Government Accounting Office, Washington, DC
Peter Neupert, Vice President, Microsoft Health Solutions, Redmond, WA
Mary Grealy, President, Health Leadership Council, Washington, DC

The reason I make a point of this is that consumer IT is something everyone thinks all consumers should be aware of, so are members of Congress consumers too, I think so, right?   These were the folks that testified.  There was also talk about measuring BMIs, but did you see some of the BMI’s on the committee?  Is this another chapter in in the book of “its for those guys over there”?

HHS National Plan to Improve Health Literacy – Not Going To Happen Until We Focus on Using Technology (The Tool for Literacy) Which Includes Role Models at HHS And Other Places in Government

When it comes to improving Health Literacy can we include these folks too?  It’s not just the public that should be admonished and beat up in the press, it’s the leaders too so we all need to read up here. 

As I have said many time it helps to participate as then we can perhaps have some role models.  The US is in dire need of some of those right now.

For a simple example if you were learning how to drive for the first time, who would you feel more confident with help you learn, one who read a book about driving that has never driven a car, or one who drives a car every day?  This is the same thing with health literacy.  We seem to have many who want to have someone do their driving for them, you think, thus without first hand experience it costs money for studies that would perhaps not be necessary as first hand experience trumps all.  image

I get very disturbed seeing the above headline too.  This is common consumer IT knowledge and every sales agent at all electronic stores tell you how to do this and for a fee will come over and set up the network.  Have these folks in Congress leaving their wireless networks open at home not heard of “The Geek Squad” that the rest of us perhaps use from time to time?  Help for these issues is all over the place. 

Long and short of all of this is that we have government officials that live in “tech denial” and don’t participate, so we get “Magpie” healthcare, repeating the same things over and over with no real results and little progress.  Public officials take notice, your lack of computer literacy is showing big time today and you can definitely fix that if you want things to move along faster and be the role models everyone is looking for out there and not the “magpies”. 

You can’t realistically expect from constituents what you don’t practice yourself if “you want to get your money’s worth”.  BD

WASHINGTON – Federal officials responsible for writing the meaningful use rule defended it before a wary congressional panel on Tuesday, that had questions for most every facet of the rule.

Members of the House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Health grilled David Blumenthal, MD, National Coordinator for Health Information Technology and Tony Trenkle. director of the Office of E-Health Standards and Services at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on aspects of the meaningful use rule, particularly focusing on interoperability requirements, costs, privacy and health disparities.

Congress footed the bill on more than $36 billion on incentive payments for the adoption of healthcare IT in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and with the July 13 release of the final meaningful use rule, the committee made it clear they want to know if they will get their money's worth.

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