Health information technology (IT) and electronic health information sharing play critical and foundational roles in addressing the cost, quality, and access challenges of the U.S. health care system.
Electronic health information sharing was identified as one of the primary foundational capabilities required for high-performance and new models of care, in the recently released Bipartisan Policy Center report, Transforming Health Care: The Role of Health IT.
Informed by research, including a survey of clinicians on the information needs associated with transitions of care and insights provided by experts and leaders across every sector of health care, BPC’s Health Innovation Initiative developed a set of findings and recommendations for accelerating electronic information sharing to support improvements in the cost and quality of care.
BPC’s report, Accelerating Electronic Information Sharing to Improve Quality and Reduce Costs in Health Care, explores common needs and requirements for information sharing, the current state of health information sharing, barriers to its adoption, and the role that “Meaningful Use” and related standards and certification requirements play in accelerating the electronic exchange of health information.
Key findings of the report including the following:
- A business case for health information sharing is now emerging
- Lack of interoperability and information exchange infrastructure and associated costs are the most common barriers to information sharing among clinicians
- Stage 2 of meaningful use lays the foundation for increased interoperability and electronic health information sharing
- Clinicians have common health information-sharing needs and requirements
The report includes several recommendations in the following areas, to accelerate electronic health information sharing:
- Improving planning, governance, and strategy; gaining agreement on common information needs
- Improving the accuracy of patient matching
- Updating current laws to advance information sharing
- Clarifying rules and regulations associated with privacy and security
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