Trump Administration Launches MyHealthEData Initiative

Published: March 15, 2018

CMSElectronic Health RecordHHSHealth CareHealth IT

During the 2018 HIMSS conference in early March, the Trump administration announced the launch of a new initiative to put personal health care data in the hands of patients.

Seema Verma, CMS Administrator, unveiled at HIMSS18 in Las Vegas the launch of a new administrative initiative entitled MyHealthEData.  “MyHealthEData is a government-wide initiative that will break down the barriers that contribute to preventing patients from being able to access and control their medical records,” stated Verma in her speech which was later released on CMS’ website.  She went on to say, “MyHealthEData makes it clear that patients should have access and control to share their data with whomever they want, making the patient the center of our health care system.”

The MyHealthEData factsheet on the CMS website states that, “By ensuring patients have access to their full health care records and can take it with them from doctor to doctor, provider to provider, we will increase competition and reduce costs.”

The initiative is led by the White House Office of American Innovation with participation from VA and HHS, to include CMS, NIH, and ONC. The program will element roadblocks to patient access of their own data on the device or through the application of their choice.

To this end, CMS will be giving Medicare beneficiaries access to their data through Medicare’s Blue Button 2.0. 

Blue Button 2.0 will provide Medicare claims data through a universal and secure digital format for use in other applications or for beneficiaries to share with their doctors. CMS has also started a developer preview program which allows participants to build and test apps to connect to Blue Button 2.0.

Additionally, CMS is calling on private plans to provide patients with their data. Medicare Advantage private contract plans and plans offered through the federally facilitated exchanges should allow patients to receive their data.  CMS plans to overhaul its Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Programs to focus on interoperability and prevent information blocking.

CMS also plans to update provider requirements to focus on value-based care and move away from fee-for-service. Interoperability is a critical capability in order for providers to coordinate value-based care. CMS will require providers to update their systems to ensure data sharing, and provide patients with their data upon discharge.  To ensure clinicians spend more time with patients and less time entering data into an EHR, CMS is looking into streamlining Medicare documentation and billing requirements. CMS is also in the process of identifying ways to reduce duplicative testing through data sharing between provider systems.