Tuesday, February 14, 2012

States Sharing Electronic Info

Eight states representing over a third of the U.S. population has taken a huge step to share EHRs across state lines according to NYEeNEWS. Until recently, the ability to expand the usage of EHRS has been limited by the incompatibility of many different systems. A variety of custom interfaces used between records and HIEs has made it difficult to share information across systems.

But recently a workgroup of eight states and 22 vendors were able to determine common specifications by releasing a set of technical specifications able to link their regional medical networks to healthcare providers.

The healthcare providers are able to send and receive individual patient records with other healthcare providers inter and intrastate and able to search for and retrieve patient records across disparate healthcare systems.

The workgroup was formed by the New York eHealth Collaborative (NYeC). The common guidelines were created by organizations the federal government has designated to promote EHR in California, Colorado, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, and Vermont.

The states were joined by 13 EHR vendors including Allscripts, Cerner, eClinicalWorks, eMDs, ePocrates, Dr. First, First Medical Solutions, GE, Greenway, McKesson, NextGen, Sage, and Siemens. They were also joined by 9 HIE vendors that included Axolotl, dbMotion, GE, ICA, InterSystems, MedAllies, Medicity, Mirth, and Misys Open Source Solutions.

Collectively, the group is hoping to see the widespread adoption and market preference for the products that employ their specifications and they have plans to launch a pilot program.