Integrating State-level HIE into the NHIN
Three-quarter of states are pursuing some form of health information exchange (HIE), including the creation of public-private entities to provide statewide governance and interoperability. Promoting these efforts fosters both state and national HIE efforts, according to research by the State-Level Health Information Exchange Consensus Project.
The research is described in two reports that cover the project’s 2007 work. The first addresses governance and sustainability considerations and makes recommendations related to state- and federal-level HIE strategies. The second report examines the challenges of coordinating consistent policies and practices around the access, use, and control of health information.
The reports offer a special focus on key state-level organizational roles that provide distinct value to a nationwide health information network. The benefits flow in both directions: participation in an NHIN is critical to a state-level HIE sustainability, according to the research.
Defining baseline criteria for how state-level HIE entities will participate in an NHIN will advance that integration, according to the research. The reports also outline the benefits of accrediting state-level HIE entities and recommend exploring the feasibility of such a system.
Given the unique perspective of state-level entities, the project steering committee urges the inclusion of state-level HIE representation in the successor to the American Health Information Community. AHIC’s current composition does not include state-level HIE representation. The successor organization is expected to be operational this fall.
The research was carried out by AHIMA’s Foundation of Research and Education under contract with the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology. The project defines state-level entities as “multisector public-private partnerships” with a statewide mission to facilitate collaboration and structure HIE governance.