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Burgess Bill Addresses Interoperability, the Leading Health IT Issue in the US

Health care reformers around the country should be jumping up to thank Representative Michael C. Burgess (R-Texas), an MD who is working with his staff to write a bill to promote Health IT interoperability. Readers of Open Health News probably know that interoperability--in simple terms, the ability of any authorized user to read a medical record from any source--has emerged as one of the two top burning issues of health IT, the other one being the lack of usability of proprietary/lock-in electronic health records (EHRs).

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Rep. Burgess' Office Releases Draft Interoperability Bill for Discussion

The office of Rep. Michael Burgess, MD (R-TX) released a draft of the interoperability bill that they have been working for the past several months on Friday. Rep. Burgess, one of the few physicians in Congress, has been working very hard with his staff to come up with legislation that can fix the current Health IT "lock-in" crisis. This is a bipartisan effort that has full backing from the top leadership in Congress. The staff is seeking input from the Health IT community on the draft bill. Burgess's office will take comments on the draft through March 13. Rep. Burgess' staff was kind enough to provide Open Health News with a copy of the draft legislation. We have posted the entire draft bill as is below and will be writing some our thoughts over the next few days. 

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Using Open Source PDF Technology to Solve the Unstructured Data Problem in Healthcare

If there’s one major challenge to single out in healthcare IT today, it would be leveraging the growth and usage of big data. While consumer IT made big advances in the past decade to get a handle of data by marking up content, indexing it, and annotating it for use, enterprise, and healthcare IT in particular, still need to catch up on making data actionable. Read More »