ONC Announces Restructuring in Response to Expiring Funding

June 2, 2014 in News

On Friday, National Coordinator for Health IT Karen DeSalvo announced that the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT is reorganizing its reporting structure to better address new health IT challenges, according to a Federal Register notice, FierceHealthIT reports (Bowman, FierceHealthIT, 5/30).

Details of New Structure

The restructuring of the agency is in response to expiring funding from the HITECH Act and aims to “improve the overall effectiveness and efficiency of ONC,” DeSalvo wrote in an internal memo.

Specifically, DeSalvo wrote that a “flatter and more accountable reporting structure” will help the agency focus on core priorities, such as:

  • Advancements in science;
  • Care safety and transformation;
  • Data usage that advances consumer engagement;
  • Interoperability; and
  • Public health improvements (Goedert, Health Data Management, 6/1).

The new reporting structure reduces the agency’s 17 offices to 10 (Tahir, Modern Healthcare, 5/30).

The new offices and their leaders are:

  • Doug Fridsma, former chief science officer and director of ONC’s Office of Science and Technology, who will now head the Office of the Chief Scientist;
  • Jodi Daniel, former director of ONC’s Office of Policy and Planning, who will now head the Office of Policy;
  • Joy Pritts, former chief privacy officer at ONC, who will now head the Office of the Chief Privacy Officer;
  • Judy Murphy, former deputy national coordinator for programs and policy at ONC, who will now head the Office of Clinical Quality and Safety;
  • Kelly Cronin, former health reform coordinator at ONC, who will now head the Office of Care Transformation;
  • Kimberly Lynch, former director of ONC’s Office of Provider Adoption Support, who will now head the Office of Programs;
  • Lisa Lewis, former deputy national coordinator for operations at ONC, who will now head the Office of the Chief Operating Officer;
  • Nora Super who will continue as head of ONC’s Office of Public Affairs and Communications;
  • Seth Pazinski, former division director of planning and operations at HHS, who will now head the Office of Planning, Evaluation and Analysis; and
  • Steven Posnack, former director of federal policy division in ONC’s Office of Policy and Planning, who will now head the Office of Standards and Technology (Health Data Management, 6/1).

DeSalvo wrote that the changes will help the agency “meet the needs of the future … by combining similar functions, elevating critical priority functions and providing a flatter and more accountable reporting structure” (DeSalvo memo, 5/30).

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