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The ONC Health IT Complaint Form That Has No Teeth

Posted on September 14, 2015 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Neil Versel over on MedCityNews just reported that the ONC Healthcare IT Complain form that was announced on Friday is not working. If you go and visit the health IT complaint form, it just says “You are not authorized to access this page.”

While it’s quite ironic that the complaint form is down, I’m pretty sure it’s a simple fix. I’ve seen that error before on many websites and I’m guessing the ONC/HHS web people just need to make the form go live and then the page will load properly with the form.

I was discussing the irony of the form being down with Neil Versel on Facebook and I told him that I was more interested in what ONC is going to do with the complaints than whether the form was working or not. If ONC isn’t going to do anything with the complaints they receive, then the form might as well be down. Submitting a healthcare IT complaint to an organization that can do nothing about it might be a little cathartic, but not very much. In fact, over time it just leads to more anger that people have complained and nothing’s been done.

I asked Neil, “Do they [ONC] have any power to do anything?” He answered, “No. The HIT Safety Center they are working on is basically toothless.”

That’s been my impression as well. ONC would love to do something about it, but they don’t have many levers they can pull. The worst they could do is terminate an EHR’s certification, but they’ve been doing that already.

Neil and I did discuss that maybe all of the data they receive from their healthcare IT complaint form could be used to make a case for why they need more options available for them to punish bad actors in healthcare IT. As it is it seems the only thing they can offer healthcare IT complainers is some empathy. Of course, they can’t do that until they get their form working. Where’s the form I can fill out to let ONC know that their complaint form isn’t working?

4 Health IT and EHR Blogs

Posted on August 29, 2014 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

As most of you know, I’ve been regularly trying to feature other Health IT and EHR bloggers out there. A lot of them are creating some really great content and I’m always happy when there are more smart people joining in on the healthcare IT conversation. I hope you enjoy discovering some new blogs that might help you in your work.

Meaningful Health IT News – This is Neil Versel’s healthcare IT blog. Neil is the most prolific healthcare IT journalist out there having written for pretty much every healthcare IT publication over the past couple decades. I’ve mentioned before that Neil’s blog was one of the first ones I looked to when I started writing a blog. I modeled some of the things I do after him. I figured he was a real journalist and I wasn’t, so I should learn from him. I should disclose that Neil’s blog is part of the Healthcare Scene network of blogs. I’m lucky to be able to work with someone like Neil. I only wish he had more time to write on his blog.

Data 4 U – This is a new health IT blog by Lynn Zahner, a former obstetrician/gynecologist, who’s transforming into a health IT professional. Looking at even just the first 3 posts I’m excited to see what Lynn will bring next. It’s always great to have a clinician’s perspective on healthcare IT. I hope Lynn’s able to keep it up.

Kat’s Space – Kat’s blog is a new find for me. She’s a RN and digital marketing interested in tech and social media. It’s too bad I hadn’t found her before now. Sounds like we’d get along really well. She’s also a Google Glass explorer and so she provides some really interesting insights into the Glass and wearable technology space.

Accountable Health – I think we can all use a great accountable health blog. In fact, we can likely use more than one to try and figure out what’s happening with ACOs and other accountable care programs that are in the works. This blog is written by Fred Goldstein. Fred has a unique view of the accountable care world since he’s the Founder of the Population Health Alliance. I think Fred’s blog is one to watch if you care about where healthcare reimbursement is headed.

Health IT Tweet Roundup – Neil Versel Edition

Posted on July 21, 2013 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

As you know, each weekend I like to do a roundup of interesting tweets and add a bit of commentary. This time I thought it would be fun to grab some tweets from just one person, Neil Versel. Neil has been doing a number of really great posts on his blog Meaningful Health IT News lately (Full Disclosure: Neil’s blog is part of the Healthcare Scene blog network). The following tweets highlight some of Neil’s recent blog posts.


I agree that Blue Button Plus is a great step forward for Blue Button. This post is particularly interesting because Neil didn’t see the promise of Blue Button before the changes were made and it was called plus.


This is a great discussion on the meaningful use requirements and Blue Button’s role in them. Join in if you have some knowledge on the area about what your EHR is doing.


Neil’s right about people who don’t cover healthcare regularly not understanding many of the true dynamics at play. I do find it interesting that Neil is such a fan of clinical decision support. I still think it’s in such an infant state. I can’t wait for much more advanced clinical decision support.

Meet the Bloggers Panel Video and Dell Healthcare Think Tank at HIMSS12

Posted on March 9, 2012 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Meet the Bloggers Panel at HIMSS12
As many of you know, I was on a Meet the Bloggers panel at HIMSS 2012. I didn’t realize it at the time, but Charles Webster, MD (@EHRworkflow) was sitting on the front row filming us the whole time from a video camera he had attached to his hat #hatcam. I think some good information was shared for those interested in using blogging and/or social media in healthcare.

The moderator of the panel was Brian Ahier and the panelist were Healthcare Scene contributor Jennifer Dennard, Neil Versel from Meaningful Health IT News and Carissa Caramanis O’Brien of Aetna.

Neil was gracious enough to do all the work of embedding each video clips into a Meet the Bloggers at HIMSS post. So, instead, of embedding them all here, head over to his site to enjoy them. I will just embed one video of me talking about healthcare social media below:

One thing became abundantly clear at HIMSS. I love social media and know a little something about it. One of my favorite meetings was with a health IT vendor who wanted to tell me about them and talk about blogging/social media. They started asking questions about blogging/social media first and an hour later we were out of time. That interaction made me wonder if I should put together some one or two day social media training/strategy sessions for vendors. I think one key to social media is authenticity which means I think it’s hard to outsource it.

Dell Healthcare Think Tank
I didn’t participate in the Dell Healthcare Think Tank that happened at HIMSS, but two writers for Healthcare Scene did: Jennifer Dennard and Neil Versel. They posted the whole video for the event and I’ll embed it below. I was able to watch a good portion of it and found a number of the comments quite interesting. I find it really intriguing that Dell would hold an event like this. In many ways, this is how I get the knowledge and insight that I post on this blog. I spend time with many of the people that attended the think tank and we talk about the healthcare IT world.

eCollaboration at HIMSS12, MU Stage 2, Healthcare Social Media, Tablets and Accessible Patient Data

Posted on February 5, 2012 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

I’m sure many of you are recovering from the Super Bowl right now. I got exactly what I wanted from the Super Bowl: a great game. I didn’t care too much either way, but I am glad that I predicted the Giants to be the winners. Too bad I’m not a betting man. Although, I guess that’s the trick with betting….but I digress.

Time for my regular weekend round up of interesting things happening in the healthcare IT and EMR twittersphere. We’ve got some really interesting tweets this week. Here we go.


When I created and posted my list of HIMSS 12 sessions, they hadn’t created the agenda for the eCollaboration Forum at HIMSS and so I couldn’t add any sessions. However, the eCollaboration Forum at HIMSS 12 agenda is up now, so check it out. I know there are a number of sessions I’m going to add from the forum. I also love that they have the online option linked in this tweet for those not attending HIMSS 2012.


This is really important news. I think a lot of us are REALLY interested to see the final meaningful use stage 2 details. Good find by Neil Versel.


I’m sure we’re going to continue seeing the trend of more and more doctors gleaning value from engaging in social media. At a minimum doctors are going to start finding more and more new patients using social media including things like physician blogging. A well done practice website and social media effort is going to be really valuable for the doctor of the future.


Yes, blogging will also help hospitals in a number of ways too. Social media can benefit hospitals, doctors, practices, etc.


I was fascinated by this tweet. First because I wonder what changes will make tablets more than just great for content consumption. Second, the idea of PCs being more intellectually flexible.


I know there are reasons why financial data is more portable and accessible than healthcare data, but it still irks me that we haven’t overcome those reasons…yet!

Examples of Health Startup Opportunity

Posted on December 21, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Anyone that is part of the healthcare IT and EMR world has to realize that we’re in a really incredible time for healthcare IT and EMR. There’s has never been more energy, excitement and actual investment in the Healthcare IT world than there is now. If you don’t believe me, buy your ticket to Las Vegas and attend HIMSS 2012 and I’m sure you’ll see what I mean. I have a feeling that HIMSS Las Vegas is going to be bigger than ever with more money flowing as well.

Just to provide a few examples of what’s happening, the prominent IT investor Esther Dyson has invested in 20 Health IT investments. That’s a whole lot of investment in healthcare IT. She obviously sees some real opportunities available at this time in health IT.

Another recent announcement was the recent batch of 15 Rock Health Startup companies. This is just one of at least 3 or 4 health focused incubators out there. Plus, the latest batch of health IT startup companies from Rock Health even has Neil Versel singing their praises after a previous not so glowing review of the health startup incubator (or health accelerator if you prefer).

One other thing that is easy to underestimate is the value that the US government is putting on supporting healthcare innovation through entrepreneurship. Normally I’m as skeptical as anyone in putting any sort of faith in government to produce results. I still think they have their hands tied in a lot of things, but I give a lot of credit to Aneesh Chopra, Todd Park and Farzad Mostashari for doing their very best to kick against the challenges of big government while enabling health entrepreneurs to be successful.

Priya Ramachandran wrote about an example of one initiative the government is putting forward to help entrepreneurs: Access to Public Health Data. Every time I hear someone talk about the data that’s available from these public repositories of health data, the entrepreneur inside of me kicks in with ideas on how to use that data for good.

It is a really tremendous time to be an entrepreneur in healthcare. I do think we still need a better platform for health IT startups to launch their products and get funding. I have a few ideas I’m working on in this regard. More on this in the future.

Thoughts on Top #HITsm Contributor Awards

Posted on December 20, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.


Today my inbox was flooded with people congratulating @techguy and @ehrandhit for being part of the Top #HITsm Contributors of 2011. It’s very kind of them to recognize both of my active Health IT Twitter accounts. Officially @techguy was in the Top Individual #HITsm Contributors and @ehrandhit was in the Top #HITsm Organizations. I think @ehrandhit could have gone in organizations or publications, but either way I appreciate the recognition.

I think the comment at the top of the list describes the awards quite well:

By no means is the following lists all-inclusive. It does, however, represent some fantastic #HITsm voices on Twitter who regularly participate in weekly #HITsm TweetChats and share valuable Health IT information.

I always have a bit of a challenge with “Awards.” However, I think that #HITsm made a really great choice when they decided that instead of saying that this list is the “Best” or some other sort of magnanimous statement about the authority of their list, they instead said that these are some quality and valuable voices in #HITsm. No doubt there are a lot of others out there.

For example, I’d have loved to see @nversel and @john_chilmark on the list as well. They don’t use the tag #HITsm that often, but they definitely discuss those topics often on their various social media outlets. There are quite a few others that I could include in this category as well.

One thing I loved about the Top #HITsm Contributor list was how many familiar faces made it on the list. The great part is that there are so many smart minds on the list and social media makes them completely open and available to you. Without social media I’d likely know very few of those people and would have missed out on the tremendous interactions I’ve had with them at many a conference.

Maybe next year I should work with HL7 Standards and make the announcement of the awards part of the New Media Meetup at HIMSS. Might be kind of cool to get to meet all the great people in person. Yes, social media isn’t just about online connections, but taking those connections offline as well. As I often say:

Social Media (and Twitter in particular) is about connecting people!

In true social media fashion, the list of winners is also available as an embed, so you’ll find the list of Top #HITsm Contributor Awards embedded below as well. Here’s to another great year of Social Media in Healthcare.

EMR and Healthcare IT Blogging Community – Let the Sparring Begin

Posted on July 1, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

I remember when I first started blogging about EMR and health care IT about 5.5 years ago, I searched out whatever EMR and healthcare IT blogs I could find. The first three blogs that I can remember finding (and loving) were Neil Versel’s blog, Shahid’s Healthcare IT blog and Will Weider’s Candid CIO blog.

I loved reading Neil Versel’s blog because he was actually a professional journalist in the healthcare IT arena. I learned a lot by watching what he did. In fact, I think some of my writing style came from reading his blog. Along with his blog, Shahid provided HITsphere where I could see the posts from other bloggers. Plus, in the early days the traffic from HITsphere to my blog was really great. It’s hard to have a blog that no one reads. I loved the Candid CIO. Partially because the writing was so good and Will is a really smart guy. Partially because I was completely intrigued that the CIO of an organization was blogging. At that time I think I also aspired to be a CIO like Will. Funny how life changes and I prefer to be a blogger now. I’ll leave the stress of CIO to Will. I’m happy to say that all three of these bloggers are still wielding their blogging sword and I still enjoy reading their work.

Needless to say, the EMR and Healthcare IT blogging community has gotten much larger than it was 5.5 years ago when I started. Like many things, with that growth a lot of things have changed. Some for the good and some for the bad. One thing that I miss is all the interaction we use to have as bloggers. Certainly some of that interaction has moved to Twitter and other social media sites. However, I wish we had more interactions with bloggers like we use to do when there were only 5 of us out there.

I personally like to call it blog sparring. Basically, you take someone else’s post and provide the opposing perspective or at least you add to the conversation that they started. I love these types of interactions with other bloggers. Plus, I love the deep dive into a specific topic that happens when you do this type of blogging. As a reader, I think it’s fun to read the various blogger’s perspective on the topic.

So, on that note, I’m going to make the next week, Blog Sparring Week. I’m going to find interesting posts from some of the best EMR and healthcare IT bloggers out there and I’m going to write a post in response or in addition to the comments they made. This way, you’ll get to know some of the other interesting bloggers out there, but you’ll also get the chance to read some interesting in depth commentary.

Hopefully, the bloggers I write about will join in on the fun by either replying to my blog posts or blog sparring with other EMR and healthcare IT bloggers.

If you have posts you think I should consider, let me know in the comments.

EMR and HIPAA Quote of the Sunday

Posted on June 5, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Lately I’ve been posting a number of tweets in a sort of Sunday Tweet roundup. I think it’s been fun to highlight some short Healthcare IT and EMR related tweets that people might find interesting. With a little bit of commentary of my own (let me know if you disagree).

Today, I decided I’d just go with a small quote from a comment that Chris Paton made over on Neil Versel’s Meaningful Healthcare IT News. Here it is:

We’re a long way from getting rid of doctors but they might find their role changes from being repository of all knowledge to being a trusted communicator and carer.

I’d been trying to summarize this position in a coherent way and I think Chris hit it on the head. Not only the part about being a long way from getting rid of doctors, but his description of doctors not being the repository of all knowledge, but instead a trusted communicator and caregiver is interesting to consider. Not to mention it’s a much better way to describe the transition than I did in my previous post about the subject.

Jeopardy!’s Watson Computer and Healthcare

Posted on May 25, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

I’m sure like many of you, I was completely intrigued by the demonstration of the Watson computer competing against the best Jeopardy! stars. It was amazing to watch not only how Watson was able to come up with the answer, but also how quickly it was able to reach the correct answer.

The hype at the IBM booth at HIMSS was really strong since it had been announced that healthcare was one of the first places that IBM wanted to work on implementing the “Watson” technology (read more about the Watson Technology in Healthcare in this AP article). Although, I found the most interesting conversation about Watson in the Nuance booth when I was talking to Dr. Nick Van Terheyden. The idea of combining the Watson technology with the voice recognition and natural language processing technologies that Nuance has available makes for a really compelling product offering.

One of the keys in the AP article above and was also mentioned by Dr. Nick from Nuance was that the Watson technology in healthcare would be applied differently than it was on Jeopardy!. In healthcare it wouldn’t try and make the decision and provide the correct answer for you. Instead, the Watson technology would be about providing you a number of possible answers and the likelihood of that answer possibly being the issue.

Some of this takes me back to Neil Versel’s posts about Clinical Decision Support and doctors resistance to CDS. There’s no doubt that the Watson technology is another form of Clinical Decision Support, but there’s little about the Watson technology which takes power away from the doctor’s decision making. It certainly could have an influence on a doctor’s ability to provide care, but that’s a great thing. Not that I want doctors constantly second guessing themselves. Not that I want doctors relying solely on the information that Watson or some other related technology provides. It’s like most clinical tools. When used properly, they can provide a great benefit to the doctor using them. When used improperly, it can lead to issues. However, it’s quite clear that Watson technology does little to take away from the decision making of doctors. In fact, I’d say it empowers doctors to do what they do better.

Personally I’m very excited to see technologies like Watson implemented in healthcare. Plus, I think we’re just at the beginning of what will be possible with this type of computing.