Survey: eHealth Exchange participants will serve 100 million patients

A new Healtheway eHealth Exchange survey reveals a dramatic increase in participation and online transactions in the national health information exchange.

The eHealth exchange, a public-private partnership formerly known as the National Health Information Exchange, currently represents 800 hospitals, 6,000 mid-to-large medical groups, 800 dialysis centers and 850 retail pharmacies throughout the nation, according to an announcement from Healtheway.

"It's particularly gratifying to witness the increase in transactions throughout the community," Michael Matthews, president and chair of Healtheway, said in the announcement. "Each transaction represents another process simplified, a patient better served or a doctor better informed. And this is just the beginning."

In 2013, several hundred thousand transactions were securely exchanged among eHealth Exchange participants related to treatment, transitions of care and eligibility for federal benefits, including Social Security. The survey results found that eHealth Exchange participants pushed more than 26 million transactions to CMS related to quality data for the End Stage Renal Disease program.

"The numbers tell a very compelling story," Mariann Yeager, Healtheway executive director said. She said that over the next few months, it is anticipated that the eHealth Exchange will connect more than 1,600 hospitals, as well as 10,000 medical groups. "In total," she said, "eHealth Exchange participants are expected serve nearly 100 million patients--almost a third of the country's population."

The eHealth Exchange helps health organizations set up secure, online data exchange. Additionally, it:

  • Provides a standardized and cost-effective way to securely share clinical information without having to establish point-to-point legal agreements and negotiate/test with every exchange partner
  • Helps satisfy Stage 2 Meaningful Use requirements, including the transitions of care measure #2
  • Complements state and regional health information organization (HIO) efforts to connect their communities.
  • Expedites processing of disability claims and payment of benefits to the disabled

During Farzad Mostashari's reign as National Coordinator for Health IT, he sought consensus in establishing interoperability, and some of the progress came from the work of a powerful private-public coalitions, including Healtheway and the EHR/HIE Interoperability Workgroup (IWG), a New York eHealth collaborative.

To learn more:
- read the announcement from Healtheway

Related Articles:
CCHIT: Interoperability breakthrough near
CCHIT to create IT framework for ACOs
HIE governance framework needs to be more sturdy
ONC reveals next steps for HIE governance support
ONC awards grants for HIE governance efforts

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