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Survey Says: 46% of Healthcare Leaders Have Yet to Assess Capacity for HIE

October 3, 2012

Plymouth Meeting, PA-based ECRI Institute released its latest white paper, which explores whether healthcare leaders are prepared to share data across a healthcare community to improve coordination and quality of care.

The white paper, “Crossing the Connectivity Chasm: Pinpointing Gaps in Readiness to Exchange Health Information,” is based on results of a survey conducted by ECRI Institute and strategic partner s2a (www.s2aconsulting.com).

While the survey findings reveal that healthcare leaders understand the importance of HIEs, the paper points out the challenges they are facing in identifying what they need to do in order to successfully set up and maintain interoperability.

“Only 54% of the respondents indicated that their organization has formally assessed their health information exchange and interoperability needs,” said Thomas E. Skorup, MBA, FACHE, vice president of ECRI Institute’s Applied Solutions Group. “If an organization fails to address the gaps in its ability to exchange healthcare data, not only will it delay efforts to provide patient care and quality at lower costs, it may also prevent that organization from meeting Meaningful Use requirements set forth by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).”

The survey addressed 10 issues pertaining to HIEs. Participants indicated if they agreed, partially agreed, or disagreed with each of the statements, which included the following:

Your organization’s electronic health record (EHR)/electronic medical record (EMR) electronically exchanges health information with non-employed provider EHRs/EMRs
Your organization has begun to utilize IT systems to analyze and manage the population health information needed to be more accountable for patient care
Providers not employed by your organization have remote electronic access to your enterprise clinical information systems

“Healthcare leaders know they need to create a fluid exchange of health information that allows them to demonstrate improved communication and coordination of care between providers,” says s2a President John K. Evans, MHA, FACHE. “But our data show that they need assistance in navigating the twists and turns of achieving interoperability.”

HIE is part of Meaningful Use set forth in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. Under these guidelines, hospitals must use certified EHRs to improve quality of care and share clinical quality measures with CMS.

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