Openess and Transparency

I have been following the US “meaningful use” debates quite closely and regularly listen in on committee and working group sessions related to this topic that are broadcast over the Internet.   Another venue for public participation in the debate is through a web-based discussion forum:

http://www.regulations.gov/search/Regs/home.html#searchResults?Ne=11+8+8053+8098+8074+8066+8084+1&Ntt=CMS-2009-0117&Ntk=All&Ntx=mode+matchall&N=8060

An example of the type of comments posted on this site is a letter from signed by Massachusetts  senators Paul G. Kirk Jr. and John F. Kerry.  They ask that “meaningful use” criteria require “the inclusion of a physician narrative beyond the template text”.  They argue that such narrative “enables medical providers to explain their thought processes, including issues such as why they recommended one treatment over another”.

I continue to be amazed at the degree to which the debate on “meaningful use” is made public.  My sense is that this level of openness and transparency is not only leading to a more robust definition of “meaningful use” but is also contributing to a more constructive and respectful debate.

Mike

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