ONC HITAC Creates Pharmacy Interoperability Task Force

June 16, 2023
Task force to identifying recommendations to support interoperability between pharmacy constituents for pharmacy-based clinical services and care coordination

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology’s Health Information Technology Advisory Committee (HITAC) has formed a Pharmacy Interoperability and Emerging Therapeutics Task Force.

The announcement of the formation of the 23-member task force was made by Tricia Lee Rolle, ONC senior advisor, during the June 15 ONC HITAC meeting.

The task force is charged with identifying opportunities and recommendations to support and improve interoperability between pharmacy constituents (prescribers, pharmacists, pharmacy benefit managers, payers, public health agencies, etc.) for pharmacy-based clinical services and care coordination, including identifying standards needed to support prescribing and management of emerging therapies and policy and technology needs and considerations for direct-to-consumer medication services.

Questions the task force will address include:

• How can ONC help facilitate adoption and use of standards to support data exchange for pharmacy-based clinical services?

• Which priority pharmacy-based clinical use cases should ONC focus on in the short-term and long-term?

• What technology gaps exist for pharmacists to participate in value-based care?

• What can ONC do to address drug inventory transparency for prescribers and consumers?

The task force is also charged with developing recommendations for prescribing authorities related to public health and Emergency Use Authorizations.

In the short-term, it is tasked with identifying critical standards and data needs for pharmacists and interested parties to participate in emergency use interventions. Are there actions ONC can take to enable data exchange in support of public health emergency use cases? For example, Test to Treat and COVID-19 treatment prescribing?

In the longer term, the task force is asked to come up with recommendations to better integrate pharmacy systems and data for public health surveillance, reporting and public health interventions.

The task force will also identify standards needs to support prescribing and management of emerging therapies including, but not limited to specialty medications, digital therapeutics, and gene therapies.

The task force is expected to deliver final recommendations to HITAC on Nov. 9.

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