Fed releases multiple health IT RFPs

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In recent weeks Health Imaging & IT has reported on developments leading to a Health IT bill introduced last week by Rep. Tim Murphy (R-P.A.) and Patrick J. Kennedy, (D-R.I.) called the 21st Century Health Information Act (H.R. 2234).

Now, separately, several federal agencies working in conjunction have put forth a number of requests for proposals related to the building of a national health information network architecture, according to a Department of Health and Human Services website (DHHS).
   
The first request is for the development of a 'prototype for a nationwide health information network architecture.' Six proposals are expected be chosen and announced within fiscal year 2006.
   
Forty contracts will be rewarded for the assessment of laws and business rules from a state law and business-level perspective which will likely create obstacles to the development of automated health information exchanges.

Another RFP is the development of a prototype process for the inspection and certification of the mechanisms behind electronic health record (EHR) interoperability. One such contract will be granted for this work.
   
One additional contract will be awarded for developing a prototype system which will 'harmonize' various standards across different organizations making use of electronic medical record (EMR) systems which again will boost cooperation between institutions.
   
The final three RFPs will be awarded by Sept. 30, 2005, according to DHHS.