required to advance statewide interoperable health IT.

A health IT coordinating council. The council will bring together internal DOH programs and policies involving health IT to align strategies, avoid duplication and streamline programs. The council will also serve as a liaison for health IT among health-related state agencies and the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. The council's first priority will be a children's health care initiative to align programs with corresponding information systems for immunization registries, lead and newborn screening, and vital records to support improvements in children's health.

The health IT public-private partnership. The partnership will help DOH collaborate with public and private health care leaders on health IT. DOH has asked the New York eHealth Collaborative (NYeC), based in New York City, to coordinate this effort in an inclusive and open manner. NYeC is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving health care quality, safety and efficiency through health IT.

Because of this new health IT program, Daines said DOH will re-bid the proposals sought in 2006 to grant $53 million through the third phase of the Health Care Efficiency and Affordability Law for New Yorkers (HEAL NY) for health IT projects. A new RFP will be issued later this summer for $106 million to advance the technology required to achieve an interoperable health information exchange and a quality measurement and reporting capability.

"The first phase of HEAL grants for health IT helped many regional collaborations of health care providers advance governance structures and clinical priorities to inform health information exchange approaches," Daines said. "Our longer-term approach is more comprehensive than HEAL 3's original goals, so we feel taxpayers will be better served by a re-bid that will help us achieve a seamless health information exchange capability that has strong protections for patient privacy."