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[health-ont] RE: Unexpected RFI developments from ONCHIT

To: "'Bob Smith'" <Bob@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, "Health-Ont" <health-ont@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: "Bob Smith" <robsmith5@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Wed, 8 Jun 2005 18:16:25 -0700
Message-id: <200506090115.j591FpgS029296@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>

Hello, Health-ONTO members,



We all expected some RFPs to emerge from ONCHIT after release of the NHIN Summary Report, but I assumed it would be late summer.


I just got a Heads Up notice from HIMSS with the following information relevant to our discussions tomorrow:




At the HIMSS Summit, Dr. Brailer displayed renewed energy as he announced the release of four RFPs as part of a contracting process to address fundamental issues critical to achieving an interoperable NHIN and driving EHR adoption. The RFPs are as follows:


  • Standards harmonization: a single award contract to develop, test, and evaluate a feasible prototype standards harmonization process.
  • Certification: a single award contract to evaluate the feasibility and effectiveness of a compliance certification and inspection process for EHRs.
  • Prototypes for an Internet-based NHIN Architecture: six awards for prototypes of Internet-based interoperable NHIN architectures. Prototypes must be able to function in real-world settings in a non-proprietary fashion.
  • Privacy and Security Solutions for Health Data Exchange: a single contract with up to 40 subcontracts with designees of state or territorial governments to review state and local interpretations of privacy and security regulations to determine challenges and possible solutions for achieving smoother transmission of healthcare data.



The announcement also claimed significant funding arrangements had been achieved with US Congress.


Is it feasible for the Health Onto team to support members interested in any of these RFPs? How might our NHIN Thesis be presented as an early task in considering NHIN projects? Do we have an opportunity to advance Ontology management and engineering as a professional practice?


My quick read of the four lead me to a tentative conclusion that the answers to these questions is a tentative YES. The last RFI involves a single contractor and up to 40 states, and some ways seems to be among the richest challenge for Ontologists, in a consulting role to the Primary Contractor. Again, this is a very quick and tentative assessment.


Others of you may have much better suggestions for discussing any one or all of these RFIs at tomorrows session.




Bob Smith, Ph.D.

Health Onto Project Coordinator

Professor Emeritus, California State University/

Tall Tree Labs

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