On June 6, 2013, Get Real Health’s CEO and Founding Partner Mark Heaney spent the day at the White House for the Patient Access Summit II. This small, invitation-only meeting brings together senior government officials, patients and representatives from provider systems, EHR companies, payers, patient facing applications/tool developers and advocacy organizations for collaborative a discussion. This year’s theme was “Turbo Charging Patient Use of their Health Data.”
Get Real Health was the only representative of technology vendors who work directly with patients. As a result, Heaney was often directly called on to provide insight into health information technology solutions from a patient’s perspective. “We… participated in an open discussion. Actually, I got a chance to challenge the federal officials on what they’d done, and bring up some questions about some of the challenges we’re facing in the future,” said Heaney.
The meeting was not entirely focused on present challenges, but also the future of health information technology. According to Heaney, “We really came together as a group to talk about what the solution to these problems are and how industry can solve these challenges in a free market way, rather than relying on the government…how we make people want to do this and how do we encourage innovation.”
Earlier in the week, from the Main Stage at Health Datapalooza, Get Real Health announced that their InstantPHR™ platform. would offer support for Blue Button + in the August release. Blue Button is a symbol for patient access to personal health information in a useable and safe format. Blue Button + is the next step of the Blue Button evolution –offering a blueprint for the structured and secure transmission of personal health data on behalf of an individual consumer.
At the Patient Access Summit, Heaney rubbed shoulders with many of the same industry leaders that appeared at Health Datapalooza. Todd Park, Chief Technology Officer of the United States, and Farzad Mostashari, National Coordinator for Health Information Technology offered welcome remarks. Soon after, Summit attendees delved into the challenges of making patient access to health data a reality. After identifying major challenges, participants committed to work in small groups to start tackling these challenges and to report back in 90 days with a progress update. “This meeting marks the launch of going from the potential and theoretical to the reality of making patient access to health data happen for real people,” said Heaney.