Blumenthal will lead Commonwealth Fund
Dr. David Blumenthal, the former head of the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, will serve as the next president of the Commonwealth Fund. Blumenthal will replace Karen Davis on Jan. 1, 2013, according to a news release from the Commonwealth Fund, a foundation dedicated studying healthcare policy and practice. He currently serves as chairman of the organization’s Commission on a High Performance Health System. Davis announced in November that she would step down at the end of 2012. Blumenthal, tapped to lead the ONC by President Barack Obama in March 2009, was the third physician to fill the role. He stepped down in the spring of 2011 to return to Harvard University, where he currently serves as a professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and as chief health information and innovation officer at Partners HealthCare System, Boston. Dr. Farzad Mostashari succeeded Blumenthal as head of the ONC. Blumenthal appeared five times on Modern Healthcare’s list of the 50 Most Influential Physician Executives and topped the list in 2010. Part of Blumenthal’s legacy at ONC is the five-year Federal Health IT Strategic Plan, delivered in 2011 just before he stepped down. But his tenure will forever be linked with the launch of an array of federal health IT promotional programs funded by a $2 billion direct appropriation to ONC by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (See story, p. 14).