Coalition Letter to AHIC Consumer Advocate Nancy Davenport Ennis Regarding Health Information Technology Initiative

September 26, 2005

Dear Ms. Davenport-Ennis,

Congratulations on your recent appointment to the consumer position on the American Health Information Community (AHIC). The organizations listed below all recognize the potential of health IT to improve our health care system and wish to be engaged and supportive of the process of developing a national health information network. The AHIC will play a critical role in defining the standards and policies that shape this network, and its decisions could affect virtually every American.

Our organizations have been meeting regularly over the past year or so – to increase our understanding of the health IT environment and to identify policies and practices that will assure the best results for patients and consumers. We have been focused on some of the more challenging policy questions that will be addressed both regionally and nationally.

You will have a vital responsibility as the sole representative of consumer and privacy interests on the AHIC, and we hope that you will keep us apprised of emerging issues and provide us with an opportunity to share our views with you. We think it would be mutually beneficial to spend some time together, reviewing the AHIC agenda and exchanging perspectives on how best to move health information technology forward in the public interest.

We would be happy to arrange a meeting at your convenience. Jane Loewenson, at the National Partnership for Women & Families, is coordinating our group and would be able to work with you to arrange a time.

We look forward to better understanding your views on the AHIC and its assignment and working closely with you in the coming years.

Best regards,

American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees
American Hospice Foundation
Citizen Advocacy Center
Consumers Union
Department for Professional Employees, AFL-CIO
Health Privacy Project
Jacobs Institute of Women’s Health
Maternity Center Association
National Consumers League
National Health Law Program
National Partnership for Women & Families
Service Employees International Union
Title II Community AIDS Network