TWO DAYS AND COUNTING: Expo session on IT comes on heels of naming of new national health information technology coordinator

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David Blumenthal, M.D.
David Blumenthal, M.D.
Long-term care providers are liable to hear the name David Blumenthal, M.D., a lot in the coming months and years if all goes as planned at the Department of Health and Human Services. On Friday, HHS named Blumenthal the new national coordinator for health information technology.

Nursing homes and other long-term care providers have been struggling to raise their profile and rates of adoption when it comes to IT readiness. That, coupled with the federal government's aggressive stand on providers using more advanced technology, could transform the landscape significantly in the near future.

This and other technology issues that drive quality improvement will be in the spotlight Wednesday during a free McKnight's Online Expo webcast. Registration is free and now underway here.. In addition to gaining the ability to earn free CE credits, registrants also will automatically be entered in a drawing to win one of 10 $100 gift cards.

That's a lot simpler than the job Blumenthal has at hand. Most recently a policy expert at a major Boston hospital, he is also a professor of medicine and health policy at Harvard Medical School.He'll be charged with leading the implementation of a new health IT framework, as designated in the recently passed American Recover and Reinvestment Act. Among other things, he will oversee the use of $20 billion in the recent economic stimulus package for greater use of IT in healthcare.