We have now past the 19 year mark in our quest for healthcare interoperability. Under an executive order from president G W Bush, the ONC was established and Dr. David Brailer was dubbed “America’s first Health Information Czar.” The Meaningful Use program was then born out of the HITECH Act and Merit-Based Incentive Payment System was then born our of the MACRA legislation. And then information sharing from the CURES Act. And now the release of Trusted Exchange Framework and the Common Agreement (TEFCA). All trying to move our healthcare system to the digital age, better outcomes, controlling and reducing costs, and patient access to their health data. It has not been an easy road and the debate of the journey will never end.
Industry and Contract News
Health Gorilla Achieves Designation as a Qualified Health Information Organization (QHIO) in the California Health and Human Services Data Exchange Framework
Health Gorilla (@healthgorilla), a privacy-focused Health Information Network and interoperability solution provider, announced that it has achieved designation as a Qualified Health Information Organization (QHIO) by the California Health & Human Services Agency (CalHHS) Center for Data Insights and Innovation (CDII).
Spotlight on Community Networks
The Network for Regional Healthcare Improvement (NRHI) and the Strategic Health Information Exchange Collaborative (SHIEC) announced a formal affiliation between the two organizations to form a new organization named Civitas Networks for Health. The organization serves as a platform for local nonprofit health collaboratives and health information exchanges to grow and thrive. Read their latest news.
Follow them @civitas4health.
Mark your calendars for Civitas 2024 in Detroit on October 15-17, 2024 and keep an eye on your inbox for early-bird rates.
State HIE News
Aetna® Provides Grant to Georgia Health Information Network for SDOH Referral Pilot Project
The Georgia Health Information Network (@GeorgiaHIE), Georgia’s state-designated health information exchange (HIE), has received a $200,000 grant from Aetna, a CVS Health® company. The grant will fund a pilot project to demonstrate the feasibility and value of a closed-loop referral service that supports social care integration between healthcare organizations and community-based organizations.
HealtheConnections Assists CDC With Public Health Analytic Projects
Community-wide health information exchange (HIE) data offers unique opportunities to inform, support, and promote initiatives aimed at improving health in our communities. HealtheConnections (@_myHeC) has partnered with Lantana Consulting Group to investigate public health use cases for HIE data. Lantana helps healthcare providers, government agencies, and insurance providers achieve clinical information exchange and health data management, and a strategic partnership was a natural fit.
California designates 9 Qualified Health Information Organizations (QHIO) for Interoperability Framework
California’s newly-designated QHIOs will play a critical role in promoting the secure exchange of health information under the Data Exchange Framework (DxF), empowering health and social services providers across California to provide the best possible care.
On Oct. 24. 2023, CalHHS announced these 9 organizations.
- Applied Research Works, Inc.
- Health Gorilla Inc.
- Long Health Inc.
- Los Angeles Network for Enhanced Services (LANES)
- Manifest MedEx
- Orange County Partners in Health-Health Information Exchange (OCPH-HIE)
- SacValley MedShare
- San Diego Health Connect
- Serving Communities Health Information Organization (SCHIO)
Hires and Openings
Active in all 50 states, the eHealth Exchange is the largest query-based, health information network in the country. It is the principal network that connects federal agencies and non-federal organizations, allowing them to work together to improve patient care and public health. They have an open position for:
- Onboarding Program Manager
Reports to: eHealth Exchange Vice President of Interoperability Adoption
FLSA Status: Exempt, Full Time
Supervisory Responsibility: N/A
VITL is the legislatively designated operator of the Vermont Health Information Exchange (sometimes written VHIE and pronounced Vee-high). Currently they have openings for Interface Integration Data Analyst and Strategic Relationship Manager.
Delaware Health Information Network
Delaware Health Information Network (DHIN) is the nation’s first statewide health information exchange established by statute as a not-for-profit public instrumentality. Currently they are looking for a Paralegal and Project Manager.
Health Gorilla aspires to cut through the noise and disrupt the healthcare information technology space – making interoperability possible and ensuring access for developers, providers, and patients. Join them in their quest to improve patient and physician satisfaction, care delivery, clinical and operational outcomes, and health equity. View all their current job openings.
Civitas is Hiring!
Civitas is seeking a self-starting, motivated person who excels at organization, and time management. The ideal candidate will be passionate about furthering the mission of our organization’s work by assisting the team to be most effective with their time.
Velatura HIE Corporation Hires Noelle Parker
Velatura HIE Corporation, a not-for-profit organization offering affiliation, collaboration, and integration opportunities to health information exchanges (HIEs) across the country, announced the appointment of Noelle Parker, MBA, CMPE, PCMH-CCE as Vice President of Client Affairs for its Midwest division.
eHealth Exchange Annual Meeting
When: November 14, 2023
Where: Town and Country Resort, San Diego CA
This year’s annual meeting will feature presentations and discussions requested by our eHealth Exchange participants.
Anticipated Topics include, Implementing Trusted Exchange Framework and Common Agreement (TEFCA), Supporting public health, Reaching rural health, Expanding federal agency participation, Increasing data usability. Spreading FHIR, and Exploring the network roadmap.
2023 Sequoia Project Annual Meeting
When: November 15-17, 2023
Where: Town and Country Resort, San Diego CA
Once again, you are invited to attend the 2023 Sequoia Project Annual Meeting. This year, Carequality will join the Sequoia Project to host a joint annual meeting with a single registration. The Sequoia Project members and Carequality implementers will have exclusive early access to registration. They are traveling to San Diego, California, for the event, and they hope to see you there.
Anticipated Meeting Topics: Trusted Exchange Framework and Common Agreement (TEFCA), Public Health, Data Usability, Information Sharing, Security and Privacy, Qualified Health Information Networks (QHINs),Consumer Engagement Strategies, Payment and Operations, Unconference Sessions, Patient Request / Patient Access, and FHIR.
Stay tuned for more details.
State of Healthcare Interoperability Virtual Summit 2023
When: Wednesday, December 6, 2023 12:00 – 4:30pm ET
Register for this event.
Join DirectTrust and Answers Media Network for a free half-day virtual Summit on the current and future state of interoperability. Hear from industry leaders on hot topics, including what’s new and what’s next, regarding data quality and usability, patient identity, use cases for interoperability, engaging patients, and the future of interoperability.
ONC's Cures Act Final Rule
In May of 2020 the 21st Century Cures Act: Interoperability, Information Blocking, and the ONC Health IT Certification Program released by the ONC and published in the Federal Register. Here is a quick timeline.
- 6/30/20 – General Effective Date
- 4/5/21 – Compliance requirements start for information blocking, assurance, and API
- 4/5/21 – HIT developers prohibited from restricting certain communications
- 12/15/21 – Submit initial real world testing plans
- 4/1/22 – 1st attestation to conditions of Cert required
- 12/31/22 – New HL7 FHIR API capability and other update criteria must be made available
- 3/15/23 – Submit initial real world testing results
- 12/31/23 – EHI export capability must be made available
The TEFCA Players
ONC Recognized Coordinating Entity (RCE)
The Recognized Coordinating Entity (RCE) – The Sequoia Project (@sequoiaproject)is responsible for developing, implementing, and maintaining the Common Agreement component of the Trusted Exchange Framework and Common Agreement (TEFCA). The Common Agreement is the baseline technical and legal requirements for health information networks to share electronic health information and is part of the 21st Century Cures Act (Cures Act).
In addition they will collaborate with ONC to designate and monitor Qualified Health Information Networks (QHIN), modify and update an accompanying QHIN Technical Framework, engage with stakeholders through virtual public listening sessions, adjudicate noncompliance with the Common Agreement, and propose sustainability strategies to support TEFCA beyond the cooperative agreement’s period of performance.
On August 28, 2023, the ONC awarded The Sequoia Project 5-Year TEFCA RCE Contract to continue their services.
RCE Releases TEFCA Facilitated FHIR IG Draft 2, and Updated Versions of QHIN Onboarding & Designation SOP and QHIN Application
- TEFCA Facilitated FHIR Implementation Guide, Draft 2 (Pilot Version)
- updated versions of the Qualified Health Information Network (QHIN) Onboarding & Designation Standard Operating Procedure (SOP)
- QHIN Application for stakeholder feedback.
QHIN Applications Moving Forward
According to Allied Market Research, the healthcare interoperability solutions market size was valued at $5,320.0 million in 2020, and is expected to reach $21,544.6 million by 2030, registering a CAGR of 14.9% from 2021 to 2030. Interoperability in healthcare refers to timely and secure access, integration and use of electronic health data so that it can be used to optimize health outcomes for individuals and populations. As populations around the world age and people live longer, interoperability and data sharing are going to become increasingly critical for delivering effective healthcare. Interoperability is the ability of two or more systems to exchange health information and use the information once it is received.
According to the report published by Fior Markets, the global healthcare data interoperability market is expected to grow from USD 2.83 billion in 2020 and to reach USD 5.80 billion by 2028, growing at a CAGR of 9.38% during the forecast period 2021-2028. The primary reasons driving healthcare interoperability market growth include a growing focus on patient care, a growing need to tighten healthcare costs, and government measures to improve patient experience of treatment. System interoperability, information interchange, and data availability are all important factors in improving health outcomes. Individual health data is mobilized throughout the whole range of care providers in health organizations, enabling coordinated, safe, and high-quality treatment that supports payment reforms, transparency efforts, and individuals’ ability to control their health.