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Planned Survey to Uncover Attitudes toward Health IT

surveyThe Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT is planning on conducting a nationwide survey of public opinion about electronic health information exchange and the privacy and security of personal data that is shared.

Little is known about people’s attitudes toward electronic health information exchange and the extent to which they are interested in determining by whom and how their health information is exchanged. The proposed information collection will allow ONC to better understand the public’s attitude toward electronic health information exchange and its associated privacy and security aspects as well as inform policy and programmatic objectives.

While electronic health information exchange promises numerous benefits for individuals and the U.S. health care system through improved health care quality, safety and efficiency, it also poses new challenges for protecting health information. Health IT and electronic health information exchange may also provide individuals with new, more effective methods to engage with their health care providers and affect how their health information may be exchanged.

ONC hopes to collect about 25,000 responses over an eight-week period. The survey will be conducted by the use of computer-assisted phone interviews to interview a representative sample of the general U.S. population. The data will be analyzed using statistical methods and a draft report will be prepared.

The agency will hold a Web seminar prior to the publication of the final report to convey the findings to the general public. It is unclear as to when it would conduct the survey.

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