Health Information Management

News: WEDI report outlines focus for healthcare IT growth

CDI Strategies, December 19, 2013

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It’s been more than a decade since the Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange (WEDI) drafted its last roadmap for healthcare information technology uses. Earlier this month, the WEDI Foundation released a new roadmap which identifies four focus areas and offers several recommendations for actions within each, such as:

  • Patient Engagement: The report recommends standardizing patient identification across the healthcare system; expanding health IT education and literacy programs for consumers; and identifying effective ways to use emerging “smart” technologies to communicate with patients
  • Payment models: The report cites the Affordable Care Act as a significant challenge in terms of facilities’ ability to meet requirements and to use technology to meet payment challenges. The report suggests that an overarching framework should be developed that identifies areas where technology solutions can “mitigate barriers to implementation.”
  • Data harmonization: The report promotes “consistent and efficient methods for electronic reporting.” It points to the progress made since the publication of its first study but argues that a “more sophisticated level of integration and interoperability is necessary…”
  • Innovative encounter models: In a world where “virtual” interactions have become commonplace, the 2013 WEDI report argues that alternative modes of connectivity can and should be used to promote healthcare interactions. “’Innovative’ encounters like email, texting, and telehealth are powerful tools to engage patients and providers…,” it states. The report recommends sharing “best in class” approaches and identifying state and federal regulations which prohibit the expansion of such innovations.



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