National Alliance to finalize health IT definitions

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The National Alliance for Health Information Technology, with the guidance and management of BearingPoint, is seeking further input on draft definitions, as it nears the deadline to finalize definitions for five health IT terms.

To enable widespread participation in this project for U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of the National Coordinator, a second public comment period is being conducted from March 24 - April 9 to review the work completed so far in defining the five terms: electronic medical record (EMR), electronic health record (EHR), personal health record (PHR), health information exchange (HIE) and regional health information organization (RHIO).
According to the Alliance, in the most recent version of the definitions, HIE is defined as the process of electronic health information exchange, not a governing function or entity.  Public comments are being sought for names and associated definitions for a sixth term to describe the function or entity that governs health information exchange beyond the confines of a specific regionally based community.
The final definitions will provide an important reference point for policy evaluation and standards development activities and they will help explain health IT concepts in language that consumers can readily understand, the Alliance said.
Remarks may be submitted at, where an updated version of the draft definitions is posted.