Senate committee looks at affordability; ONC annual meeting targets interoperability
NOV. 28: The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee continues its deep dive into how to fix the nation’s healthcare system. During the fifth in a yearlong series of hearings, committee members will learn how innovation can improve affordability. Dr. Jonathan Perlin, president of clinical services at HCA Healthcare, is among the witnesses slated to testify. As is Cheryl DeMars, CEO of The Alliance, a cooperative of more than 240 self-insured employers. When committee Chairman Lamar Alexandar (R-Tenn.) announced the hearings in June, he said the goal was to “explore why Americans spend so much on health care and how to reduce those costs.”
NOV. 28: The Democrats won the House, now can Nancy Pelosi reclaim the gavel? In a secret-ballot vote, the party selects leadership posts ahead of a Jan. 3 full House roll call vote. Pelosi—who was vilified by many Republicans, and even some Democrats, during the midterms—is vying to take back the speakership, a position she held from 2007 to 2011. Opposition to Pelosi escalated in the caucus last week when 16 Democrats signed a letter saying they’d vote against her. Speaking of leadership positions, Rep. Richard Neal of Massachusetts is slated to take over the Ways and Means Committee, Rep. Frank Pallone of New Jersey will lead the Energy and Commerce Committee, and Rep. Mark Takano of California will chair the Veterans’ Affairs Committee.
NOV. 29-30: Health IT leaders will get a chance to tell government officials what’s on their holiday wish list during the Office of the National Coordinator’s 2018 annual meeting. More than 1,000 IT professionals are expected to attend the two-day affair in Washington, D.C. Besides interoperability, several sessions are focused on using IT to manage the opioid crisis. And will we finally see the long-awaited data blocking rule?
NOV. 30: It’s inevitable that the machines will take over soon, right? (See Innovations, p. 38) Thankfully, the Federal Communications Commission is getting out in front of things. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai will convene a forum on artificial intelligence and machine learning. “Because so much of AI intersects with the commission’s technological and engineering work, we want to explore what it means for the future of communications,” Pai noted in a news release announcing the meeting.