143B-139.4D. Department of Health and Human Services; coordination of health information technology.

(a) The Department of Health and Human Services, in cooperation with the State Chief Information Officer, shall coordinate health information technology policies and programs within the State of North Carolina. The goal of the Chief Information Officer of the Department of Health and Human Services in coordinating State health information technology policy and programs shall be to avoid duplication of efforts and to ensure that each State agency, public entity, and private entity that undertakes health information technology activities does so within the area of its greatest expertise and technical capability and in a manner that supports coordinated State and national goals, which shall include at least all of the following:

(1) Ensuring that patient health information is secure and protected, in accordance with applicable law.

(2) Improving health care quality, reducing medical errors, reducing health disparities, and advancing the delivery of patient-centered medical care.

(3) Providing appropriate information to guide medical decisions at the time and place of care.

(4) Ensuring meaningful public input into health information technology infrastructure development.

(5) Improving the coordination of information among hospitals, laboratories, physicians' offices, and other entities through an effective infrastructure for the secure and authorized exchange of health care information.

(6) Improving public health services and facilitating early identification and rapid response to public health threats and emergencies, including bioterrorist events and infectious disease outbreaks.

(7) Facilitating health and clinical research.

(8) Promoting early detection, prevention, and management of chronic diseases.

(b) The Department, in cooperation with the Department of Information Technology, shall establish and direct a health information technology management structure that is efficient and transparent and that is compatible with the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (National Coordinator) governance mechanism. The health information technology management structure shall be responsible for all of the following:

(1) Developing a State Plan for implementing and ensuring compliance with national health information technology standards and for the most efficient, effective, and widespread adoption of health information technology.

(2) Ensuring that (i) specific populations are effectively integrated into the State Plan, including aging populations, populations requiring mental health services, and populations utilizing the public health system, and (ii) unserved and underserved populations receive priority consideration for health information technology support.

(3) Identifying all health information technology stakeholders and soliciting feedback and participation from each stakeholder in the development of the State Plan.

(4) Ensuring that existing health information technology capabilities are considered and incorporated into the State Plan.

(5) Identifying and eliminating conflicting health information technology efforts where necessary.

(6) Identifying available resources for the implementation, operation, and maintenance of health information technology, including identifying resources and available opportunities for North Carolina institutions of higher education.

(7) Ensuring that potential State Plan participants are aware of health information technology policies and programs and the opportunity for improved health information technology.

(8) Monitoring health information technology efforts and initiatives in other states and replicating successful efforts and initiatives in North Carolina.

(9) Monitoring the development of the National Coordinator's strategic plan and ensuring that all stakeholders are aware of and in compliance with its requirements.

(10) Monitoring the progress and recommendations of the Health Information Technology Policy and Standards Committee and ensuring that all stakeholders remain informed of the Committee's recommendations.

(11) Monitoring all studies and reports provided to the United States Congress and reporting to the Joint Legislative Oversight Committee on Information Technology and the Fiscal Research Division on the impact of report recommendations on State efforts to implement coordinated health information technology. (2017-57, s. 11A.1; 2018-5, s. 11A.1.)