Heath IT Policy

Intel public policy: How Intel promotes innovation worldwide

Doctors having a conversation in hospital cafe

Healthcare systems are embracing the transformative power of technology, from electronic health records that organize medical data and enable providers to share it more easily across healthcare settings to mobile technologies for self-management and virtual care. Within the next ten years, half of all care will be delivered virtually, with providers paid based on their teamwork and quality of care. 24x7 diagnostics monitoring from phones, wearables, and implantables from the hospital to the home are achievable—if the right policies are enacted.

Information technology solutions for complex big data medical challenges are accelerating genomic sequencing and using data analytics to provide a comprehensive patient assessment. In our view, two factors have the potential to make dramatic changes in U.S. healthcare: consumer engagement and payment for outcomes, both of which are dependent upon a robust health IT framework.

Key Issues

  • Removing the barriers from widespread adoption of genomic sequencing for personalized, targeted medicine. Congressional action clarifying issues of secure and private use of genomic data for research, appropriate regulation by federal agencies, and fair reimbursement for laboratory testing will lead to faster cures and treatment.

  • Practicing healthcare beyond the institutional walls, allowing for more personalized, directed care in real time. We support changes to current Medicare reimbursement policies that limit clinicians in providing virtual care and remote patient monitoring when growing evidence clearly shows the value to the patient and the associated cost savings. Patients and doctors should be able to choose how to access and deliver care rather than being constrained by payment systems that pre-date the Internet.

  • Charting regulatory pathways to clearly distinguish between software and medical devices. Today, Congress, regulators, and industry are collaborating to find the most effective regulatory and legislative framework. Initiatives like the Food and Drug Administration Safety Innovation Act (FDASIA) can better define which technologies fall outside of FDA device regulation, while providing alternative frameworks to ensure functionality and safety. We urge Congress to stay involved in this process.

  • Ensuring that health IT architecture enables an interoperable and secure user experience. Congress has provided $27 billion for doctors and hospitals to adopt electronic health records. However, the vision of comprehensive patient records has not been realized because data is not being shared among clinicians and hospitals. We urge Congress to use the Sustained Growth Rate (SGR) reform to ensure that the complete patient record is accessible to the care team to enable more informed care.