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2009 HITSP Webinar Series to Focus on Advancements in Harmonization and Implementation of Healthcare IT Standards

New York, Nov 20, 2008

The Healthcare Information Technology Standards Panel (HITSP), a multi-disciplinary coordinating body charged with identifying the technical standards necessary to enable healthcare data interoperability, announced today the schedule for its upcoming 2009 educational webinar series.

Building upon the success of its 2008 webinars, the new sessions will address the latest initiatives in healthcare information technology (HIT) standards harmonization and provide “real-world” reports on implementation of the HITSP Interoperability Specifications (IS).

An Executive Order signed in 2007 called for any new or upgraded federal health information system launched after January 1, 2008, to be compliant with IS recommended by HITSP.

“The work HITSP has done on problem lists, medications, notes, allergies, reports, microbiology, and labs has brought together many stakeholders and resolved many differences,” said Dr. John Halamka, chair of HITSP, CIO of the CareGroup Health System, CIO and dean for technology at Harvard Medical School, chair of the New England Health Electronic Data Interchange Network (NEHEN), CEO of MA-SHARE, and a practicing emergency physician.

The 2009 webinar series will commence on Thursday, January 15, 2009, with a 90-minute introductory session that will be hosted by Dr. Halamka.

During this introductory session, Dr. Halamka will provide a high-level overview of HITSP, touching on its 2008 accomplishments; current work in progress; a proposed new activity to support the harmonization of electronic health records for clinical research; the relationship of HITSP to AHIC 2.0, the new private-sector led successor to the American Health Information Community (AHIC); an introduction to future priority areas for healthcare IT harmonization; and examples of implementation of HITSP in the "real world."

The January 15 session is the first in the series of free webinars that will be held once per month during 2009; the sessions are organized by the HITSP Education, Communications and Outreach (HITSP-ECO) Committee. Participation during the presentation, or download of the archived version of the presentation materials and audio recording of the event, is free for interested stakeholders.

“The objective of the HITSP webinar series is to help participants gain an appreciation for how standards that promote interoperable HIT can help to enhance patient care and contain costs, and how HITSP is involved in the facilitation of healthcare information sharing,” said Joan Duke, co-chair of the HITSP-ECO Committee working group that drives webinar development.

“We are providing details about the latest HITSP-identified standards and recommendations in a way that is tailored specifically for interested stakeholders – from healthcare practitioners and vendors to policy makers and standards developers,” added Virginia Lorenzi, HITSP-ECO co-chair.

Participation in the live event requires both telephone and Internet connections. All webinar sessions will be recorded for playback via archives found on

For more information, visit or send an email to

To listen to archived webinars, click here.

Operating under contract to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), HITSP is administered by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) in cooperation with strategic partners including the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS), the Advanced Technology Institute (ATI) and Booz Allen Hamilton.

About ANSI
ANSI is a private non-profit organization whose mission is to enhance U.S. global competitiveness and the American quality of life by promoting, facilitating, and safeguarding the integrity of the voluntary standardization and conformity assessment system. Its membership is comprised of businesses, professional societies and trade associations, standards developers, government agencies, and consumer and labor organizations. The Institute represents the diverse interests of more than 125,000 companies and organizations and 3.5 million professionals worldwide.