Mid-way through 2019, much of the healthcare marketplace is well into Promoting Interoperability (PI), which is the most recently proposed electronic health record (EHR) initiative from CMS (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid).Today many hospital IT leaders and CIOs nationwide are persisting on a path toward interoperability with many of their peers, however, while some lead the way, many others lag far behind.
Despite an initial push towards progress, for many of these healthcare organizations (HCO), the journey towards interoperability is still full of uncertainties and other challenges of various degrees.
It is the view of MEDHOST, as well as other healthcare information exchange (HIE) experts, that complete participation and achievement of interoperability is a key element to improving provider care quality and population health management. However, since the signing of the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act, which established foundational support for expanded HIE networks, interoperability adoption in the U.S. has been slow.
While it is nearly impossible to fully solve for all the uncertainties in the era of interoperability, we can, however, identify the challenges that may inhibit the speed of hospital participation and adoption.
According to the leading research company Gartner, hospital CIO’s can start working in tangent with EHR vendors to find an effective solution to interoperability by considering nine potential barriers hospitals may face.
With a knowledge of what lies ahead, hospital IT leadership should have an advantage in creating successful interoperability strategies. While there are still questions surrounding how to achieve nationwide interoperability, the good news is that there are indications at the state and private levels that an expansive healthcare information exchange, as envisioned by the Promoting Interoperability initiative, is a real possibility.
Knowledge of what interoperability may require will always give providers power. We strongly believe that participation in interoperability is one of the most important steps healthcare organizations can take to help the industry as a whole arrive at a standardized solution. If more healthcare organizations, HIT vendors, and other entities can collaborate on effective ways to help clear the path to interoperability, enhanced care quality nationwide should be a welcome by-product.
How can you get involved? Learn more about how we can work together towards improving rural health care and promoting interoperability during the National Rural Health Association’s 17th Rural Health Clinic Conference Sept. 17-18 and 18th Critical Access Hospital Conference Sept. 18-20 in Kansas City. Aug. 16 is the deadline for NRHA’s biggest discounts, so register today.
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