Weems: Berwick and Blumenthal would be information technology 'dream team'

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David Blumenthal
David Blumenthal

The potential combination of Donald Berwick as administrator at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and David Blumenthal as national coordinator of health information technology would be a healthcare IT “dream team,” one former CMS official recently said.

Kerry Weems, acting administrator at CMS during the Bush administration, recently lauded the experience of CMS nominee Berwick, Healthcare IT News reported. Citing both Berwick's advocacy of evidence-based medicine and Blumenthal's efforts to increase the use of healthcare IT, Weems said the two are “exactly the kind of team you need to drive results with health IT,” according to Healthcare IT News. Blumenthal was named national coordinator of health information technology a year ago. Berwick's confirmation as administrator is subject to approval by the Senate.

Nursing homes lead the healthcare field in adoption of healthcare information technology, according to a 2004 national survey of nursing homes. (McKnight's, 11/10/08) CMS is set to disburse $25 billion to help spur healthcare IT adoption nationwide as part of the stimulus package, according to Healthcare IT News.