National Health IT Week (NHIT Week), October 8-12, is a nationwide awareness week focused on catalyzing actionable change within the U.S. health system through the application of information and technology. Virtually, in Washington DC and beyond, NHIT Week stakeholders collaborate towards actionable outcomes which demonstrate the power information and technology has to transform health in the U.S., and its wide-reaching global impact.
There are a variety of ways that state and local government, nonprofits and other partners can get involved with NHIT Week. The state and local levels are where the rubber meets the road, so there are often good stories and lessons learned about the role and value of health information and technology. Share your knowledge and make your voice heard during the Virtual March on the States. Every year HIMSS encourages members and partners to reach out to Congress or elected and appointed state government officials to support health IT policy priorities.
This year we will be leveraging the HIMSS Legislative Action Center to focus on state level policy activities. As in the past, you can contact your elected state officials and share views on policy issues of high importance to HIMSS and the health IT community. The best part is that it takes less than five minutes to personalize your message.
Other opportunities to get involved include visiting the NHIT Week website and thinking about some of the strategies listed there – whether it’s blogging, organizing an event, or even sharing a model or best practice from your state or local jurisdiction as it relates to your own local success with health IT.
This year's asks highlight four key changes states can make to leverage health information and technology to mitigate the opioid crisis.
1. Enact or Broaden Adoption of Electronic Prescribing of Controlled Substances (EPCS)
HIMSS urges states to find ways to increase provider usage of EPCS systems to increase patient safety and address fraud and abuse issues. EPCS has been permitted by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) since 2010, and more than 93 percent of pharmacies nationwide are EPCS-enabled, but only 26 percent of prescribers utilized EPCS as recently as May 2018.
2. Integrate Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) into Electronic Health Records (EHRs)
HIMSS urges states to minimize provider burden by integrating PDMP data into EHRs and further complement PDMP utilization with more provider onboarding and training.
3. Leverage Telehealth to Increase Access to Treatment and Address Provider Shortages
HIMSS encourages states to leverage telehealth and tele-psychiatry to increase access to substance use disorder treatment and address provider shortages, particularly in rural communities.
4. Create an Integrated Data Infrastructure Across Public Health, Behavioral Health, Justice and Human Services to Enhance Timely Opioid Crisis Response and Prevention
HIMSS urges states to create or utilize an integrated, community-based health information and technology infrastructure through open data portals or a centralized data infrastructure with real-time dashboards and shared analytics capabilities to combat the opioid epidemic.
It takes two minutes. Take action now to address the opioid crisis.
Healthcare Transformation | Access to Care | Economic Opportunity | Healthy Communities
Share your story, provide insights and help develop healthcare policy during NHIT Week – focused on catalyzing actionable change within the U.S. health system through the effective use of health IT.
View this year’s calendar of events
Explore this guide on supporting #NHITWeek through social media
Submit an #IHeartHIT Story
Participate in the Virtual March
Explore 10 ways to celebrate in your hometown
See the 2018 NHIT Week partners list, and sign up today