Jason Carmichael, CEO of Galen Healthcare Solutions, explains how Galen helps increase interoperability, leverage Big Data, and supports a platform that predicts the cost of an episode of care while helping design coordinated care plans.
Archive for the tag 'HIE'
If you happened to miss the tweets from @GalenHealthcare, InterSystems Global Summit took place March 8th-11th in Orlando, FL. As an implementation partner of InterSystems, members of Galen have attended this conference before, but this was a first for a colleague and myself. For those of you who don’t know, InterSystems is a global technology company that offers products like Caché®, Ensemble®, and HealthShare®. They are the main technology provider for companies like Epic, HIXNYSM, HIETexas, as well as many non-healthcare companies.
The Global Summit was a chance for InterSystems, along with its technology partners, to strategize for the new year, share methodologies, educate one another, and celebrate the past year’s successes. One theme that particularly resonated with me was Interoperability, which has been my main focus for the last five years while working at Galen. Over time I have gained skills and experiences that help streamline an integration project, but because standards are never strictly followed, or consumers and senders observe different versions of the same standard, an integration does not progress without a few bumps in the road. While at the conference I picked up a great saying that I hadn’t heard before, “Once you’ve developed one HL7 interface, you’ve developed one HL7 interface”.
Interoperability is my third favorite buzz word phrase behind Big Data and Game-Changing Deep Dive. Everyone talks about it and everyone claims their solutions are viable. I believe the true key to interoperability is not to follow the latest and greatest standard but to have the flexibility to support a variety of standards within your product. InterSystems has been able to accomplish this with C-CDA. InterSystem’s HealthShare® provides an effective methodology to facilitate version agnostic document exchange. All documents received into HealthShare® are converted to Structured Document Architecture (SDA) which enables the transformation to any of the 20+ recognized Document Standards. SDA is also considered future proof because you have the ability to create new file formats as the standards change. This was extremely interesting to me after having dealt first hand with limitations of generating specific document standards to comply with a multitude of receiving systems.
If you would like more information about how Galen can help you with the InterSystems suite of products please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Healtheway, Inc. is a fully incorporated organization that provides management and administration support for two Health Information Exchange (HIE) programs, eHealth Exchange and Carequality. They host monthly informational calls that are open to the public in which updates on both programs, including general and specific points along their existing project timelines, are discussed.
eHealth Exchange is the federal network that focuses on developing the infrastructure to support the secure and trusted exchange of health information between the federal agencies and healthcare organizations. Participants in this network are onboarded and must demonstrate success through 35 tests to operate as a bi-directional exchange. There are currently 51 participants in the eHealth Exchange process and the list can be viewed here.
Carequality is a recent addition to the oversight role of Healtheway and their goal is “to facilitate agreement on a common national-level set of requirements that will enable providers to access patient data from other groups” (Carequality Press Release, 2014). Their model is similar to the banking industry’s framework during the creation of the ATM network. Both programs are designed to operate independent of their support organization and have their own by-laws and organizational structure to help them accomplish their goals and achieve their mission.
On their June 6th call, it was evident that the eHealth Exchange model is maturing, and that existing discussions involve expansion of the participants and further defining of specifications to improve confidentiality and security of health information. An example of the expansion involved a discussion to create a new subset of Responder Only Profile members that would represent intermediaries, such as medical release of information organizations and EHR vendor networks. These members would not initiate requests but only respond to requests over the Exchange network. This represents a shift in how the Exchange had previously been designed, and presents an opportunity to expand both the size and scope of the network. Further discussions will define criteria for inclusion and sending to the Coordinating Committee for approval.
The updates continued with the Carequality timeline and their creation and approval of the organizational structure, including the Governance Charter, Articles of Incorporation, and By-Laws. This signifies completion of a critical path in their development, and a shift in focus to establishing additional committees, councils, and work groups to begin defining the common national standard for the transmission of health information. To facilitate this major undertaking, the organization is actively seeking nominees for individuals to serve as members in any of these roles that have been defined by their By-Laws; interested individuals can apply on their website .
It is evident that progress is being made to build a standardized structure akin to the banking industry’s implementation of online banking for customer access, and eventual banking access across multiple accounts and institutions. While there are differences in the guiding hand of this progress, the interoperability of healthcare information is key to driving one of the goals of health care reform in reducing costs and improving quality of care.
On July 16th at 2:00 pm, Galen will be presenting a webcast that will provide additional explanation of how this exchange will occur and how real-time access to the patient’s record can substantiate these claims. You can register to this webcast by clicking here.
Galen Healthcare Solutions announced its strategic partnership with Orion Health in a past January article. Since then, Galen has been heavily involved in the recent boom of Health Information Exchange (HIE). What’s an HIE? In a nutshell, HIE is the “secure health data exchange between two or more authorized and consenting trading partners” (HIE Implications in Meaningful Use Stage 1 Requirements). On one end is the data supplier; on the other end is the data receiver. A third party – in this case, Orion Health – facilitates the data transfer to ensure quality control and necessary HL7 specifications.
I’ve spent the past few months working with two promininent HIE projects: hundreds of hospitals in each state sending demographic information, clinical documents, laboratory results, radiology reports, and immunizations to the state’s data repository. Providers from those hospitals are then able to access a portal that can display a patient’s full medical history from multiple hospitals on one profile.
Engaging in an HIE is one way for a hospital to meet Stage 1 Meaningful Use objectives. HIE engagement will only grow in the future as Stage 2 and Stage 3 Meaningful Use requirements are initiated. At its core, Meaningful Use is using EHR technology to promote patient engagement, care coordination, and health security. A breakdown of the 3 stages are as follows:
An important criteria for Stage 2 is that providers who have met Stage 1 for two or three years will need to meet meaningful use Stage 2 criteria to continue collecting government incentives. As eligible providers move into the next phase of meaningful EHR utilization, we can expect the trend of HIE to continue, with increased attention on advanced clinical procedures.
HIMSS 2014 represented Galen’s first as an exhibitor to the event. The results were simply fantastic. It was great to connect with clients, both new and old. We had conversations regarding ways we could help with initiatives that are top of mind for clients- assessment and optimization of existing application deployment, integration and conversion strategy and needs driven by HCO acquisition and EHR vendor switch, patient engagement enablement through solutions such as Dragonfly, public and private HIE participant on-boarding, and most importantly the roadmap to value-based-care. As an organization, we have evolved from our Allscripts roots, through partnerships and business lines with prominent vendors such as Orion, Meditech, Epic, RelayHealth, Aternity, Merge and Intersystems to name a few. It is clear that our methodology (empowering, nimble, ego free, one-stop shop, personable and collaborative) is well received, resonates with our clients, and really differentiates Galen in the overall client experience. If you have yet to work with us or are new to Galen, we encourage you to get a sample by attending one of our industry-leading free webcasts. The excitement generated from HIMSS is palpable, and we are thrilled to bring our passion, energy and commitment to better the industry.