Emdeon and MITRE Perform First Pilot of Clinical Lab Data Exchange Using hData Format

Use of standard web technology eases the path to interoperability and meaningful use

NASHVILLE, Tenn., Aug. 12 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Emdeon Inc. (NYSE: EM), a leading provider of healthcare revenue and payment cycle management solutions, today announced a collaboration with The MITRE Corporation (MITRE) to demonstrate the overall feasibility of using the open source healthcare data (hData) format in an electronic clinical healthcare information exchange environment. MITRE is a not-for-profit organization that provides systems engineering, research and development and information technology support to the federal government.

The Emdeon-MITRE pilot is a research project created to study the ease of mapping and exchanging clinical healthcare information in the hData format, which organizes clinical information for data exchange. By leveraging Emdeon's technology capabilities for clinical lab orders and results contained in its Emdeon Clinician product, Emdeon and MITRE were able to successfully exchange de-identified lab orders and results and display the information through a web portal during the initial testing phase of the pilot.

"In the era of meaningful use, the electronic exchange of clinical data will be essential. Because providers use disparate healthcare information technology solutions, an easy method of mapping and exchanging clinical data between and among systems is required. hData provides a way for the industry to map clinical data from any electronic health record (EHR) system and creates interoperability," said Miriam Paramore, senior vice president of clinical and government services for Emdeon.

The meaningful use criteria under the HITECH Act requires healthcare providers to successfully exchange electronic clinical healthcare information, such as lab orders and results, to receive incentives and avoid penalties in payments from Medicare and Medicaid. As leaders in their respective fields, Emdeon and MITRE came together to examine practical solutions for exchanging healthcare information in a widely-available, simple web-based application. The companies explored exchanging health information by using technologies employed by secure, authenticated popular e-commerce sites because these types of applications have already demonstrated great scalability and are familiar to a large number of web developers. As a result of the pilot, the companies believe the combination of these secure, scalable and well-understood technologies provide a firm foundation to develop a cost-effective solution for both implementation and end use.

The two companies will share their hData clinical findings with the healthcare industry in an effort to support more efficient and effective clinical data exchange among all stakeholders. For example, the findings and the easy-to-use hData format will inform other collaborative projects, such as the National Health Information Network (NHIN) Direct effort, which is a project sponsored by the Department of Health and Human Services and seeks to enable the transport of health information between healthcare providers.

"As the industry strives for simple, direct, secure and scalable transportation of health information over the Internet and between known participants in support of meaningful use, hData lowers the barrier to healthcare IT integration by focusing on ease of implementation," said Joy Keeler, healthcare IT program manager at MITRE. "Our work with Emdeon lays the foundation for more efficient healthcare information exchange, and further analysis of the pilot will provide us with important insights on reference implementation and standards in the months to come."

About Emdeon

Emdeon is a leading provider of revenue and payment cycle management solutions, connecting payers, providers and patients in the U.S. healthcare system. Emdeon's product and service offerings integrate and automate key business and administrative functions of its payer and provider customers throughout the patient encounter. Through the use of Emdeon's comprehensive suite of products and services, which are designed to easily integrate with existing technology infrastructures, customers are able to improve efficiency, reduce costs, increase cash flow and more efficiently manage the complex revenue and payment cycle process. For more information, visit www.emdeon.com.

About hData

hData is a free, open source framework for the exchange of electronic health data initially designed by The MITRE Corporation and collaboratively developed in conjunction with government, industry and academia. hData provides a format which leverages web technologies, allowing developers to improve the interoperability and efficiency of health IT systems with tools they already know. hData allows for the sharing of health information through RESTful Web Services, enabling rapid integration into existing systems. Additionally, hData provides a method for storing health information in a zip file, which can be exchanged via email or USB portable drives. Currently, MITRE is working to establish hData as a recognized standard. For more information on hData, visit www.projecthdata.org. For more information on MITRE, visit www.mitre.org.

SOURCE Emdeon Inc.