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National Quality Forum picks AMIA for national priorities partnership

Washington, DCAMIA, the association for informatics professionals, has been selected to serve as a partner for one year in the National Priorities Partnership (NPP), beginning Sept. 21, 2010. A coalition of 48 organizations convened by the National Quality Forum (NQF) will reconstitute the NPP, which currently comprises 32 organizations working to address challenges in the U.S. health care system. The NPP's previous work has targeted ways to eliminate harm, waste, and disparities in health care delivery. The NPP aims to leverage its collective influence to align public and private sector activities with the National Priorities and support their implementation.

AMIA President and CEO Edward H. Shortliffe, MD, PhD, notes that in 2011, the NPP will consider action strategies for public-private alignment in healthcare.

"AMIA is a natural partner for this coalition," Dr. Shortliffe said. "The need for information underlies essentially all clinical work: from questions asked during a patient history, to medical tests ordered, to books a physician or nurse reads. Informatics in practice can mean that clinical decision support is at the ready for researchers, physicians, nurses, dentists, public health workerseveryone who plays a role in health care delivery. It also can mean that patients have the ability to play a more proactive, more engaged, and more informed role in their own care. Informatics closes the circle of information flow and draws focus and specificity to a patient, patient group, diagnosis, or treatment. It is foundational to quality health care."

Since 2007, the National Priority Partnership has represented multiple stakeholders in addressing ways to improve the national healthcare system. In 2008, the NPP released a report called National Priorities and Goals: Aligning Our Efforts to Transform America's Healthcare, and recommended six areas of focus for improvements.

"Currently, there are too few trained biomedical informatics scientists," said Dr. Shortliffe, "And informatics expertise is not created quickly. In health care, clinicians are beginning to recognize that they need the support of information science to practice in the 21st century, where much of the world's exploding knowledge base and data is digital. Expanding capacity to promote informatics education as a requirement for effective health care delivery is an important part of what AMIA can bring to national priorities and to a national strategy."

The NPP delivered recommendations in October 2010 to Secretary Sebelius for a set of eight national priorities and goals: patient and family engagement, safety, care coordination, palliative and end-of-life care, equitable access, elimination of overuse, population health, and infrastructure supports. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) contracted with the National Quality Forum to convene NPP to provide input on a proposed framework for the National Quality Strategy and offer recommendations for a set of national priorities and goals

As an NPP member, AMIA will serve as the voice of the nation's top biomedical and health informatics professionals. AMIA plays an important role in medicine, health care, and science, encouraging the use of data, information and knowledge to improve both human health and delivery of healthcare services. AMIA is an unbiased, authoritative source within the informatics community and the health care industry, committed to driving health improvements and improving health care delivery.


Contact: Nancy Light
American Medical Informatics Association

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