NCI to offer cancer e-care record

The National Cancer Institute, Washington, plans to release a lightweight electronic health record designed to capture data specific to a cancer patient’s office visit. The standards-based software has core EHR features for sharing information about patient diagnosis, treatment and outcomes, said Ken Buetow, associate director for bioinformatics and IT at the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The EHR is based on an early reference implementation of the Patient Outcomes Data Service, an open source “ultra-light record” derived from standards of NCI’s Cancer Biomedical Informatics Grid (caBIG). The record, which is set up to provide data on patient demographics, disease and treatment results, could be used by providers and even consumers for data exchange. The specifications and the software are available now through the NCI site but are not consumer-friendly, Buetow said. NCI plans to make it easily accessible to providers and consumers who would want to use it, within 60 days. NCI is working with SAIC and Microsoft on the project, he added. The essemce of the record is a continuity of care document, using the Clinical Data Architecture from Health Level 7, for the exchange of patient summaries and progress notes. As such, it meets a meaningful use requirement for exchanging health records between organizations.

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