Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced Tuesday the first group of the HHS External Innovation Fellows, who – over the next year – will be working on projects focused on solving critical healthcare problems.
Selected from an applicant pool of more than 100 innovators, the six External Fellows selected have backgrounds ranging from business and technology executives to lifelong entrepreneurs.
Organizations represented include: Microsoft Corporation, Intel, the Louisiana Department of Health and the U.S. Postal Service. The External Fellows were chosen based on their expertise and demonstrated ability to innovate. The External Fellows are paired with HHS internal innovators or “Host Fellows” to establish innovation as a key process and core capability at HHS.
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“The HHS Innovation Fellows Program pairs up internal and external innovators to tackle some of the most complex healthcare problems we face,” said Sebelius. “The Fellows bring entrepreneurial and innovative expertise that will help revolutionize the way things are done in government and improve the health of millions of Americans in the process.”
The projects and External Fellows are:
- Accelerating clinical quality measures for the Affordable Care Act: The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, in partnership with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), would like to develop new clinical quality measures that incorporate information available in electronic health records to monitor the impact of the implementation of the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act and the Affordable Care Act. Mindy Hangsleben, innovator in the Lean Methodology, Portland, Ore.
- Designing the infrastructure for Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) eligibility: CMS would like to develop an electronic infrastructure that states can integrate to implement the Modified Adjusted Gross Income method for determining eligibility for Medicaid and the CHIP eligibility that is required under the Affordable Care Act. Zachery Jiwa, healthcare technology executive, Baton Rouge, La. Chris Lunt, entrepreneur many times over, San Francisco.
- Building health resilience technology to withstand natural disasters: The Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response of HHS and the Federal Emergency Management Agency in the Department of Homeland Security would like to develop innovative solutions that will allow individuals with access and functional needs to continue to use their durable medical equipment (DME) during prolonged power outages. DME includes medical devices powered by electricity, such as oxygen concentrators, ventilators, and intravenous infusion pumps. Frank Sanborn, seasoned eCommerce technologist, Seattle, Wash.
- Devising electronic tracking and transport of the nation’s organ transplant system: The Health Resources and Services Administration would like to revise the existing organ transplantation system to improve identification, labeling, packaging, and transport of the nation’s organs for transplantation, and include electronic components for identifying organs and tracking their movement, to minimize the potential for misdirection or other delays in organ transportation and reduce the chance of incorrect transplantation. David Cartier, IT supply chain guru, Roswell, Ga. Clive Hohberger, applied physicist and barcode and RFID expert, Chicago.
Each of the four projects was previously selected in May 2012 from a pool of 22 submissions from HHS employees.