ONC power team: Improvements needed to share patient queries, data

Improvements need to be made to the Consolidated Clinical Document Architecture (C-CDA) implementation guidance and elsewhere to facilitate electronic health record queries for patient records for the 2017 edition of certified EHR technology, according to recommendations by the Health IT Standards Committee's Nationwide Health Information Network (NwHIN) power team.

In its latest meeting, held Aug. 28, the team noted that standardization of transport and data elements for queries of patient records was "not sufficient" and that public-private collaboration is needed to resolve issues regarding trust, patient identity and record locator services.

Certified EHR technology also needs the capacity to generate a query requesting a document containing a current summary of clinical data for a named patient and to return certain specified documents, such as a list of documents containing the requested information or a list stating that such information is not available, according to NwHIN.

The team also recommended that the committee should support efforts to develop Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR) services, and should seek vendor input to clarify high priority improvements in interoperability.

The team discussed issues regarding provider data migration and patient portability of records but made no recommendations on that topic. Its next meeting is Sept. 4.   

Stakeholders have expressed concern about the architecture being used for EHR data sharing. Some have worried that the C-CDA, currently required for Stage 2 of Meaningful Use, did not have the ability to handle interoperability required for Stage 3 and have suggested that HL-7's FHIR Standard be adopted for Stage 3 instead. Others said FHIR was not "ready for prime time."

To learn more:
- check out the meeting materials