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Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Because MeaningfulUse

I listened closely at three different workgroup's meetings last week at the HL7 WGM as nine different project scope statements, none of them more than 100 hours old (that's about four days) wended their way through committees last week in order to meet deadlines for a September Ballot.  What's the reason for this deadline I asked, and invariably the response is "Because ... Meaningful Use ... Standards ..."

And I laugh because I can add.  If the rule shows up in December, then you have to have the text ready in October AT THE VERY LATEST.  And the ballot is August for the September WGM, and you need at least 6 seeks to reconcile and publish as the very best speed.  Some of these projects carry forward work that has already been in flight, and others are simple add-ons, but some are truly brand new standards.  And those are the ones that make me laugh at the absurdity of it all, because if you want mature standards, newborns just don't make it, and the numbers just don't add up.

Oh Congress, what have you wrought with these crazy deadlines?  Do you even care?  Did you even care? Did you even know?  All rhetorical questions.

There are times that I wish there was a cost to members for voting for a Project Scope Statement.  I wish votes cast for a project were a scarce resource whose value could be subject to market demands.  I've wondered if there is truly a revenue model for HL7 simply around the development of standards and the execution of ballots.

Because ... I need a better reason that Meaningful Use to develop standards.