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    Mostashari's biggest Meaningful Use regret and health IT's future

    As head of the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology for nearly three years, Farzad Mostashari, MD, focused on making technology accessible and useful to physicians. Now, three years after leaving his post at ONC, many of the same struggles continue to plague medical practices.

    Acknowledging that fact, Mostashari remains confident in the power of data to move medical practices forward and improve patient care. 

    As part of a wide-ranging interview on healthcare with Medical Economics for our August 25 cover story, Farzad Mostashari, MD, also entertained questions from our readers. Farzad Mostashari, MD

    Mostashari is currently the chief executive officer of Aledade, a company aiding independent primary care physicians in joining accountable care organizations (ACOs).

    We asked readers for questions Mostashari could address utilizing his wide-ranging HIT expertise and selected a handful to ask Mostashari. Perhaps not surprisingly, most had to do with the health IT troubles facing physicians today.

    Medical Economics: What went wrong with the Meaningful Use program? And what could you have done better during your time at ONC to ensure its success?

    Farzad Mostashari: I think [Meaningful Use] became too much about compliance and not enough about outcomes. And when we started Meaningful Use, we had laid out stages one, two and three.

    … And we put out the structure where it was like stage one is collect the data. Stage two is do something with it. Stage three is outcomes, so that when you're doing stage one and stage two, you know that you're doing it for a purpose. And the stage three outcome is like “save lives and don't kill people.” And we got a letter from the Federation of American Hospitals that said “that’s double jeopardy.”

    [Editor’s note: In a letter to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the FAH claimed that Medicare already had a quality improvement program, and adding new quality improvement targets under Meaningful Use, with the threat of reduced reimbursements, would be the “double jeopardy.”]

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    • Anonymous
      This from a man who benefits directly from all of us 'paddling harder'. I'm done paddling harder. I'm paddling smarter, and it's called DIRECT PRIMARY CARE.
    • Anonymous
      This from a man who benefits directly from all of us 'paddling harder'. I'm done paddling harder. I'm paddling smarter, and it's called DIRECT PRIMARY CARE.

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