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Joseph H. Kanter Family Foundation Convenes Historic Learning Health System Summit; Stakeholders Collaboratively Work Toward Realizing a National-Scale Learning Health System
May 23, 2012 (05:05 PM EDT)
WASHINGTON, May 23, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The Joseph H. Kanter Family Foundation (KFF) convened a two-day Learning Health System (LHS) Summit on May 17 and 18 where over 80 prominent individuals representing organizations and stakeholders across the health care and health IT communities gathered at The National Press Club in Washington, D.C. Participants worked together to begin laying key foundational elements that promise to harmonize and coalesce cutting-edge work presently underway into a national-scale LHS.
A multi-stakeholder, 16-member Planning Committee, including two former United States National Coordinators for Health Information Technology (Dr. David Blumenthal who served under a Democratic administration and Dr. Robert Kolodner who served under a Republican administration), has been working for the past half-year to plan the Summit. The Planning Committee played an instrumental role in identifying participants to be invited and organizations to be represented at this limited-capacity, invitation-only Summit.
Participants in the two-day Summit began working toward achieving multi-stakeholder consensus on a set of principles that would underlie the development of a national-scale LHS benefiting stakeholders across the health care spectrum. In certain respects, the Summit was modeled after the 1944 Dumbarton Oaks Conference where a critical mass of key world leaders convened to achieve consensus around principles that ultimately served as the foundation upon which the United Nations was built; the Summit aspires to be to the creation a national-scale LHS what the Dumbarton Oaks Conference was to the founding of the United Nations.
"I am struck that we may have started something transcendent. I do not believe that, in the history of health in the United States, a multi-stakeholder group like this has ever gathered around an issue of such importance and common interest," said Dr. Charles Friedman, director of the Health Informatics program at the University of Michigan, who chaired the Planning Committee
The Summit generated significant enthusiasm. Recognizing the urgency of harnessing this momentum, KFF Executive Director Josh Rubin stated that, "Key next steps include continuing the consensus process around the principles and working to create a Learning Health Community. This community will develop bottom-up as a coalition of the willing. Its collaborative work ultimately aims to spawn a series of activities catalyzing the rapid development of a national-scale LHS that promises to empower individuals to transform health care and health."
Summit participants represented organizations and stakeholder groups including: patient advocacy and consumer organizations, provider organizations, research organizations, government agencies, payers, clinicians, the pharmaceutical industry, health IT vendors, philanthropic organizations, professional associations, research initiatives and organizations, and thought leaders. For a complete list of participating individuals and the organizations they respectively represented, please see http://kanterhealth.org/featured/2012-summit/.
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SOURCE The Joseph H. Kanter Family Foundation