Sunday, October 21, 2012

NwHIN Transitions to eHealth Exchange

The Nationwide Health Information Network (NwHIN) exchange is transitioning from an ONC federal program initiative to a public-private endeavor, called eHealth Exchange. The eHealth Exchange includes federal agencies and private partners that have implemented nationwide health information network standards and services and initiated the Data Use and Reciprocal Support Agreement (DURSA).

On October 1, 2012, the eHealth Exchange Coordinating Committee officially designated Healtheway, a nonprofit organization as ready to assume the operations and support of the eHealth Exchange. The operation and support includes:

  • Testing and onboarding
  • Maintaining DURSA and operating policies and procedures
  • Supporting the eHealth Exchange infrastructure including service registry and digital certificates
  • Supporting the eHealth Exchange Coordinating Committee
 ONC will also continue to work closely with organizations like Direct Trust and Healtheway to ensure the development of secure, effective, and cost efficient health information exchange standards, services and policies, and provide guidance for their implementation.

Healtheway recently announced the selection of the Certification Commission for Health Information Technology CCHIT as the testing body for the eHealth Exchange. This selection was made in partnership with the EHR/HIE Interoperability Workgroup, a New York eHealth Collaborative NYeC- led consortium of states and vendors.

The Federal Health Architecture (FHA), an E-Government Line of Business initiative managed by the ONC for HIT and was formed to coordinate health IT activities among more than 20 federal agencies that provide health and healthcare services.

The FHA is supporting the transition of eHealth Exchange from ONC to Healtheway and is working with the eHealth Exchange to communicate this transition to the broader health IT industry.

 In another move, RHEx funded by the FHA program uses a World Wide Web-based approach to HIE. The program established in 2012 has formed a successful partnership with FHA and other federal partners, HealthInfoNet, the Maine HIE, and TATRC. As a result of this partnership, two pilots were completed September 2012 that will help to provide a path for public and private entities interested in using the web for health information exchange. Details are available at