By Naveen Sarabu, Director, Product Management and Strategy, Liaison Healthcare Informatics
CMS and ONC recently released a joint fact sheet that describes progress made as part of HITECH act. According to the fact sheet, eligible hospitals and physicians have participated in the EHR incentive programs in record numbers. As of now, 75% of eligible hospitals and 44 percent of all eligible physicians have EHR incentive payment for meaningfully using certified EHR technology. There are now 941 vendors providing more than 1,700 unique certified EHR products indicating a diverse number of systems in use. All these systems pose the challenge of seamless exchange of information between different venues of cares.
That is why now CMS and ONC are making this their next key focus area. As part of this push, they are planning to leverage existing programs and resources to promote interoperability. One of them is through Stage 2 Meaningful Use requirements regarding health information exchange between providers. There are others in the industry that are also rushing to solve this challenge like the recently formed Common Well Alliance.
We believe this challenge can be solved by establishing cloud-based networks that connect all the care venues utilizing the standards that are available today, whether it is Direct or HL7 messaging. We have created networks in other industries (Global CRO integration hub in support of clinical trials, Exchange Network in support of supply chain transactions etc.) to support flow of information between different trading partners and similarly in healthcare we have created a lab information hub. We will see a growing number of these cloud-based networks that support different flows of information in healthcare as well.
What do you think?