New Hampshire Governor John Lynch on April 23, 2008 issued an Executive Order directing the Citizens Health Initiative to further develop the state’s health IT infrastructure. The Executive Order directs the group to bring together lawmakers, state government officials, business leaders, healthcare providers, workers, and insurance experts to address healthcare challenges in the state. The goal is to develop a strategic plan and deliver the plan to the Governor by December 1, 2008.
The Citizens Health Initiative wants to see New Hampshire become the first state to ensure that all physicians can prescribe medications electronically. The group has worked with insurance companies to develop criteria for “pay-for-performance” standards and the group has developed a web site so that employers are able to get the information that they need.
The Citizens Health Initiative has a working group in place with representatives from hospitals, physicians, home care and hospice providers, clinical providers, health plans, employers, state health related offices, security and privacy content experts, and consumer advocates. To meet the requirements of the Executive Order, the working group is going to consider the following:
- How to facilitate the statewide adoption of standards and interoperability requirements to provide information between providers, patients and payers, and how to provide for regional and national exchange of data
- Identify where state laws and regulations hinder rather than facilitate the adoption of HIT and HIE and recommend strategies to remove the barriers
- Identify and develop strategies for the continued protection of confidentiality and privacy of health information
- Identify opportunities and strategies for a public/private partnership approach to create financially viable and sustainable business models for HIT projects in the state
- Develop options for advancing the implementation of HIT through the state’s role as a major purchaser, provider, and regulator of healthcare services
- Develop performance metrics to measure the success of HIT implementation throughout the state