Along with a new wave of summer heat, the beginning of August brought the announcement that Farzad Mostashari, M.D., will be stepping down from the national coordinator for health information technology post this fall. Mostashari spent four years with the federal health IT office, first as a deputy national coordinator, then taking over as the National Coordinator in 2011. In a letter to Health and Human Services (HHS) staff, Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said, “During his tenure, ONC has been at the forefront of designing and implementing a number of initiatives to promote the adoption of health IT among health care providers. Farzad has seen through the successful design and implementation of ONC's HITECH programs, which provide health IT training and guidance to communities and providers; linked the meaningful use of electronic health records to population health goals; and laid a strong foundation for increasing the interoperability of health records — all while ensuring the ultimate focus remains on patients and their families.”
Social media has been buzzing ever since the announcement and many are feverishly trying to predict who will fill the shoes of Mostashari come the changing of the seasons. Before he leaves, we at Hello Health wanted to take a moment and thank Mostashari for everything he’s done for Health IT. As Sebelius made clear in her statement to the HHS, we have come a long way and much of it is due to the man directly in charge. Below is Mostashari’s e-mail to his ONC colleagues explaining his resignation.