ONC announces sites for Sync for Genes Phase 4 project

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) announced that two demonstration sites have been selected for Sync for Genes Phase 4. The Sync for Genes project supports the National Institute of Health's Precision Medicine Initiative. The goal is to advance standardized sharing of genomic information among laboratories, providers, patients and researchers using the Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR). The sites selected for Phase 4 are the Utah Newborn Screening Program (NBS) and the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP).


NBS's project will address technical components of integrating reports on genomic variant data into electronic health records. In Phase 2 of the Sync for Genes project, NBS transmitted raw next-generation sequencing data through the FHIR standard from one test server to another. In Phase 4, NBS will partner with Intermountain Healthcare to transmit genomic variant provider reports to clinical specialists and general practitioners. CHOP's project will focus on streamlining sharing of genomic data for brain tumor patients undergoing treatment at the University of California - San Francisco (UCSF). Currently, genomic data must be custom formatted and exchanged via email. CHOP will structure genomic data through the FHIR standard and transmit it to UCSF, which will then incorporate the data into its clinical and research systems.

ONC recommends standards development to support Precision Medicine Initiative

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) recently published a report of the Advancing Standards for Precision Medicine (ASPM) project team. Precision medicine moves beyond standardized approaches to healthcare delivery to tailor treatment and prevention strategies based on an individual’s unique characteristics, including environment, lifestyle and biology. The ASPM project supports the All of Us research program of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) by identifying health data needs required to advance precision medicine. The ONC report identifies two priority data classes: mobile health, sensor and wearable data; and social determinants of health (SDH) data.

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