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ONC Announces Next Stage of Blue Button.

ONC has revealed its next step in Blue Button—Blue Button+. According to a presentation given by ONC, Blue Button+ goes further than traditional blue button functions to allow patients increased access to their health information. ONC has stated that developers will be able to expect health data in a consistent structure and consumers will be able to transmit and receive data automatically. ONC has released its Blue Button+ draft implementation guide for comment, and asks that providers, payers and vendors let them know if interested in being an early implementer of Blue Button+.

In the introduction to Blue Button+, the implementation guide website states that “since the inception of Blue Button, millions of Veterans have logged onto the tool to download their personal health information, and many of the country’s largest data holders have embraced Blue Button as a way to make health care data readily available to their beneficiaries….With this implementation guidance, we are evolving the standards associated with the Blue Button. Dataholders (such as providers and payors, and their vendors) and receivers (such as PHRs and other apps and services) that choose to follow this guidance will be known as providing “Blue Button+” to their users.”

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