Weekly Nephrology/Health IT News Roundup: February 4, 2011

Health IT Chief to Step Down
David Blumenthal, appointed by President Obama to speed the health-care system’s switch from paper to electronic records, said Thursday that he will leave his federal post this spring to return to his teaching job at Harvard University.


ASN Statement in Support of US Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010
On January 31, The U.S. Department of Agriculture issued the US Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010 to provide direction on making healthy food choices to maintain an ideal weight and improve overall health. The American Society of Nephrology (ASN) supports the recommendations, which include advising Americans to reduce their daily salt intake.


Bio-Science Veins May Make Coronary Bypass, Kidney Surgery More Efficient
Scientists say they have devised a process to create ready-made, easily stored blood vessels that may potentially be used for patients undergoing heart surgery or kidney dialysis. The bioengineered transplants did well in animal trials.


Meaningless Talk Of Repealing Meaningful Use Programs
Congressional threats to repeal HITECH funding are empty, but their potential to fuel confusion and mistrust among healthcare providers is real.


What Do Future MU Requirements Mean for mHealth, If Anything?
mHealth technologies represent an important toolset available to both physicians and hospitals alike as they strive to comply with Meaningful Use. This toolset is especially useful in the hospital setting, where physicians’ compliance is absolutely critical to the hospital’s ability to earn ARRA funds.


ONC Adds $80M for Meaningful Use ‘Support Players’
The use of regional extension centers (RECs), state health information exchanges (HIEs), and community college workforce programs is getting an $80 million push from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT to support providers meeting meaningful use objectives.

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