Sharing patient health information is key to creating healthier communities

By Muhammad Chebli

Blog    Sharing patient health information is key to creating healthier communities

Sharing is a golden rule I learned as a kid. Now I work in an industry where more and more, the quality of life for millions will depend on how well our industry learns how to share patient information.

Learning how to share patient information is a challenge. But one that every practice and provider must embrace. It's not enough to sit back and let the problem take care of itself. Because it won't.

A step forward for nationwide health data sharing

As an early adopter of Carequality, NextGen Healthcare, along with athenahealth, eClinicalWorks, Epic, HIETexas, and Surescripts, took an important step toward seamless nationwide sharing of patient information. In August, the Carequality initiative went live. At select sites across the nation, providers using any Carequality early adopter EHR system can now share health information with other providers using the Carequality Interoperability Framework.

The Carequality Interoperability Framework, published last year by the Carequality initiative, is a collection of documents used to guide data sharing. It operationalizes the groundbreaking Trust Framework for Health Information Exchange, developed and published in December, 2013, by the National eHealth Collaborative through its cooperative agreement with the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

We’re getting it done!

So yes, sharing patient health information is a challenge. But it can be done by forward-thinking partners willing to collaborate and follow best practice guidelines developed by ONC and HHS. And is being done. The Carequality initiative proves we're making progress. Our president and CEO, Rusty Frantz, put it this way:

"The Carequality Initiative is a tipping point because it transforms the promise of easier nationwide health data sharing into real progress. Ambulatory providers, and the industry as a whole, need to build robust inventories of successful interoperability use-cases. Value-based medicine requires that accurate information is easily shared and accessible to the right care team and the right clinician, at the right time and place. That's true interoperability and the cornerstone to having the information needed to improve community health and reduce the cost of healthcare."

Share for free!

We've rolled out support for the Carequality framework, using our NextGen® Share platform. This means it is easy to install, use, and manage data exchange. To celebrate our early adopter status, and to make your life easier, we're offering the Carequality connectivity free for three years (through 2019). This also includes full participation in the Surescripts National Record Locator service—a great tool which enables patient discovery and document retrieval across the Carequality network.

You can get it done, too!

My message to NextGen Healthcare clients and to any/every provider reading this blog post: Don't stay on the sidelines; learn how to share patient health information.

Learn how NextGen Healthcare Mirth®Connect makes it easy to transform non-standard data into standard formats.

Muhammad Chebli

Director, Interoperability, NextGen Healthcare

Get in touch with Muhamad