US Government Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) Joins the OpenID Foundation

Published August 21, 2014
The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) located within the Office of the Secretary for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has joined the OpenID Foundation (OIDF). ONC is the principal federal entity charged with coordination of nationwide efforts to implement and utilize the most advanced health information technology for the electronic exchange of health information. ONC is at the forefront of the Administration’s Health IT efforts and is a key standards development resource to the national health system to support the adoption of health information technology and the promotion of nationwide health information exchanges. Ms. Debbie Bucci will join the Board of Directors of the OpenID Foundation as the ONC representative. Two key initiatives the ONC plans to undertake within the OIDF is to lead a Healthcare Information Exchange (HIE) working group to create a profile of OpenID Connect and follow-on associated pilot projects. Ms. Bucci, an IT Architect in the Implementation and Testing Division, is helping lead a profiling and interoperability testing effort at ONC and will be one of the leaders of the HIE working group activities. Don Thibeau, Executive Director of the OIDF, pointed out that this public sector effort parallels the increasing global adoption among large commercial enterprises. Google, Microsoft, Ping identity, Salesforce, ForgeRock and others have embraced OpenID Connect as fundamental to their identity initiatives. Thibeau noted, "After the launch of OpenID Connect early this year, the OIDF finds itself working on one of the hardest use cases in identity; patient medical records at the same time as working on the platform of choice; the mobile device. Working with OIDF member organizations like the ONC, GSMA and others brings important domain expertise and a user-centric focus to these OIDF working groups. These standards development activities are loosely coupled with pilots in the US, UK and Canada." If you are interested in the HIE working group, please consider attending the OpenID Day on RESTful Services in Healthcare at MIT on September 19th in Cambridge, MA. This event will focus on emerging Web-scale technologies as applied to health information sharing. The focus will be on group discussion among MIT's expert participants. The OIDF will follow its standards development process while MIT leads outreach and industry engagement. This day is part of the 2-day annual MIT KIT Conference at MIT on September 18-19. For more information on this event and to register, please visit