ONC Launches Data Segmentation Initiative

Joy Pritts | September 19, 2011

ONC is pleased to announce the launch of the Data Segmentation Initiative (DSI) on October 5, 2011. The Initiative will build on the vision of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST), which recommended the development of metadata tags to be used for exchanging data across organizational structures while maintaining the privacy and security of the information. As the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, Dr. Farzad Mostashari indicated in his blog announcing the creation of the Initiative, the goal of this program is to produce a pilot project that will allow providers to share portions of an electronic medical record while not sharing others, such as information related to substance abuse treatment, which is given heightened protection under the law. The technology could potentially be used to give patients choice over what health information is shared by providers electronically.

The ONC Data Segmentation Initiative is now open for anyone to join. This community will meet frequently by webinar and teleconference and has access to a Wiki page to facilitate discussion and the harmonization of data standards.  Information on how to join the Community can be found on the “Data Segmentation Sign Up” section of the Data Segmentation Wiki page.

In order to ensure the success of DSI and the subsequent pilot, we encourage broad and diverse participation in the community. Wide community participation will ensure that the standards reflect technology used across the industry and meet the needs of all stakeholders. This is your chance to have an impact on the creation and implementation of a pilot program in this important area of health IT development.

The launch will take place on October 5 in the form of a webinar, with remarks from myself, Dr. Doug Fridsma (Director of the Office of Standards and Interoperability), and Johnathan Coleman (Initiative Coordinator). The launch will feature a presentation on the concept of data segmentation and its accompanying policy considerations by Melissa M. Goldstein of The George Washington University. Instructions for attending the meeting are on the Data Segmentation Wiki page Exit Disclaimer.

For more information on the PCAST report go to: President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) Report