DALLAS—Is it me, or is the health IT community, save the eternally optimistic vendors, becoming increasingly cynical about electronic health records and interoperability?

Dave Garets, the CEO of HIMSS Analytics, described himself as a cynic in presenting some recent HIMSS research showing a stagnation in in spending IT within healthcare provider organizations. He talked about buzzkills of several “next big things” from recent years, including CPOE, the Tablet PC, natural language processing and direct electronic data interchange. None so far has lived up to previous expectations.

As I sit here in a HIMSS session, taking advantage of the wireless connectivity (something that really has taken off), former Health Level Seven chair Wes Rishel has just said, “I’ve been taking a survey here this year about the most hyped thing and two people out of every three said interoperability.”

On Thursday, Dr. David Brailer will go over some of the broad themes from the recent federal request for information regarding the proposed National Health Information Network. Perhaps his talk will shed some light on industry views of what is feasible and what is mere hype.

I invite your comments.