Patients, lawyers, developers, and others across the country have lodged more than 250 federal complaints against health care providers they say have made it harder for patients to access their own electronic medical data. Now, pressure is mounting on the federal agencies investigating the claims to handle them faster — and to disclose far more details about what they find.
Health technology leaders and former federal officials have started publicly pressing the Department of Health and Human Services to more aggressively approach instances of “information blocking,” or any interference with the exchange and sharing of patient data.
Since the information blocking rule took effect last April, patients themselves have submitted 176 complaints to an online portal managed by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT, the agency responsible for defining which practices qualify as information blocking. But the agencies tasked with levying penalties against health providers and organizations that violate the ban have yet to announce how they’ll do that nor exactly when enforcement will begin.
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