The Food and Drug Administration has announced a new program that will bring medical devices for life-threatening conditions to the market faster by shortening the up-front review process. On April 15, the agency will launch an “Expedited Access Program” for device makers seeking to bring the products to market, particularly those for unmet medical needs. The program will rely heavily on data collected once the products are commercially available. (Gustin, 4/9) The Wall Street Journal: Obama Administration Report Slams Digital Health Records Electronic Health Record Vendors Criticized For Making Information Sharing Difficult A report by the Obama administration lists complaints about the systems used and fees charged by companies to store and share digital health records. In other agency news, the Food and Drug Administration is set to expedite medical device reviews in cases of life-threatening conditions. And at NIH, researchers say that oversight paperwork is getting in the way of their work. At the National Institutes of Health’s wooded campus northwest of Washington, America’s top medical researchers work in state-of-the-art labs to find a cure for cancer, map the brain and care for patients with Ebola. If they want to leave, though, to meet with scientists around the world at scientific and medical conferences, they spend their time doing paperwork instead. (Edney, 4/9) The Obama administration took vendors of electronic health records to task for making it costly and cumbersome to share patient information and frustrating a $30 billion push to use digital records to improve quality and cut costs. The report, by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, listed a litany of complaints it has received about vendors allegedly charging hefty fees to set up connections and share patient records; requiring customers to use proprietary platforms; and making it prohibitively expensive to switch systems. (Beck, 4/10) Bloomberg: The NIH Spends More On Travel Paperwork Than On Researching Hodgkin’s Disease CQ Healthbeat: FDA To Fast-Track Device Reviews For Dire Conditions This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.