Rebuilding the Tower of Babel – A CEO’s Perspective on Health Information Exchanges

Characterizing a Health Information Exchange

The United States is facing the main shortage of healthcare practitioners in our country’s history which is exponentially boosted by an ever increasing geriatric population. In 2005 now there existed one geriatrician for every 5, 000 US owners over 65 and only nine of the 145 medical institutions trained geriatricians. By 2020 the industry is estimated to generally be short 200, 000 physicians and over a million nurses. Under no circumstances, in the history of US healthcare, has so much been required with so few personnel. Because of this shortage combined with the geriatric society increase, the medical community has to find a way to provide monthly, accurate information to those who need it in a uniform design. Imagine if flight controllers spoke the native terms of their country instead of the current international flight language, Everyday terms. This example captures the urgency and critical aspect of our need for standardized communication in healthcare. A healthy information and facts exchange can help improve safety, reduce length of hospital continues to be, cut down on medication errors, reduce redundancies in lab diagnostic tests or procedures and make the health system faster, leaner and many more productive. The aging US population along with those impacted by long-term disease like diabetes, cardiovascular disease and asthma will need to discover more specialists who will have to find a way to communicate with key care providers effectively and efficiently.

This efficiency can simply be attained by standardizing the manner in which the communication arises. Healthbridge, a Cincinnati based HIE and one of the most well known community based networks, was able to reduce their potential ailment outbreaks from 5 to 8 days down to 48 working hours with a regional health information exchange. Regarding standardization, a person author noted, “Interoperability without standards is like language while not grammar. In both cases communication can be achieved but the process can be cumbersome and often ineffective. “

United States retailers transitioned in excess of twenty years ago in order to automate inventory, sales, accounting adjustments which all improve efficiency and effectiveness. While awkward to think of patients as inventory, perhaps this has been part of the motive for the lack of transition in the primary care setting to automating of patient records and data. Imagine a Mummy & Pop hardware store on any square in midsection America packed with inventory on shelves, ordering duplicate icons based on lack of information regarding current inventory. Visualize any sort of Home Depot or Lowes and you get a glimpse showing how automation has changed the retail sector in terms of scalability and also efficiency. Perhaps the “art of medicine” is a barrier that will more productive, efficient and smarter medicine. Standards inside information exchange have existed since 1989, but recent ports have evolved more rapidly thanks to increases in standardization regarding regional and state health information exchanges.

History involving Health Information Exchanges

Major urban centers in Canada along with Australia were the first to successfully implement HIE’s. The particular success of these early networks was linked to an usage with primary care EHR systems already in place. Health and wellbeing Level 7 (HL7) represents the first health language standardization system in the United States, beginning with a meeting at the University of California in 1987. HL7 has been successful in replacing of other times interactions like faxing, mail and direct provider connection, which often represent duplication and inefficiency. Process interoperability will increase human understanding across networks health systems to merge and communicate. Standardization will ultimately impact how helpful that communication functions in the same way that grammar standards advance better communication. The United States National Health Information Network (NHIN) sets the standards that foster this delivery of interaction between health networks. HL7 is now on it’s lastly version which was published in 2004. The goals of HL7 are to increase interoperability, develop coherent standards, educate the on standardization and collaborate with other sanctioning bodies for instance ANSI and ISO who are also concerned with process refurbishment.

In the United States one of the earliest HIE’s started in Portland Maine. HealthInfoNet is a public-private partnership and is believed to be the largest statewide HIE. The goals of the network are to improve patient safeness, enhance the quality of clinical care, increase efficiency, cut down service duplication, identify public threats more quickly and extend patient record access. The four founding groups the exact Maine Health Access Foundation, Maine CDC, The Maine Quality Forum and Maine Health Information Center (Onpoint Health Data) began their efforts in 2004.

In Tn Regional Health Information Organizations (RHIO’s) initiated in Memphis and the Tri Cities region. Carespark, a 501(3)c, during the Tri Cities region was considered a direct project wheresoever clinicians interact directly with each other using Carespark’s HL7 compliant system as an intermediary to translate the data bi-directionally. Vets Affairs (VA) clinics also played a crucial role at first of building this network. In the delta the midsouth eHealth Alliance is a RHIO connecting Memphis hospitals like Baptist Memorial (5 sites), Methodist Systems, Lebonheur Healthcare, Memphis Children’s Clinic, St. Francis Health System, St Jude, The Regional Medical Center and UT Medical. These territorial networks allow practitioners to share medical records, lab valuations medicines and other reports in a more efficient manner.

Seventeen UNITED STATES communities have been designated as Beacon Communities across the U . s based on their development of HIE’s. These communities’ health center varies based on the patient population and prevalence of serious disease states i. e. cvd, diabetes, asthma. Typically the communities focus on specific and measurable improvements in excellent, safety and efficiency due to health information exchange upgrades. The closest geographical Beacon community to Tennessee, throughout Byhalia, Mississippi, just south of Memphis, was naturally a $100, 000 grant by the department of Into the Human Services in September 2011.

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