Sebelius touts new emphasis on healthcare data

Sebelius cited progress encouraging doctors to use electronic health records, as well as efforts in President Obama's healthcare law to foster a more coordinated approach to providing healthcare services.

"While these changes are still in their early stages, Americans are already seeing benefits," Sebelius wrote in a blog entry at The Huffington Post. "For example, hospital readmission rates for Medicare beneficiaries that had held steady for years have now fallen to a record low. And national health care spending has grown at historically low rates for three straight years."

She also noted that the health department recently released reams of data about the differences in what hospitals charge for surgeries and other procedures.

"We don't know exactly how developers will use this raw material," Sebelius wrote. "What we do know is that the combination of smart government policies and the ingenuity of American entrepreneurs has proven to be a powerful formula for producing long overdue innovation in health care. And that's great news for the American people."