Survey Finds Drivers, Barriers to Widespread Health Data Exchange

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During the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society's annual conference last week, the National eHealth Collaborative unveiled the results of a survey evaluating stakeholders' views on health information exchange, Clinical Innovation & Technology reports (Godt, Clinical Innovation & Technology, 3/7).

Survey Respondents

The 219 respondents to the survey include:

  • Hospital executives;
  • Leaders of health information exchanges;
  • Electronic health record vendors; and
  • Other health data exchange stakeholders.

Drivers of Health Data Exchange

When asked about the major factors driving widespread health information exchange:

  • 98% of respondents cited the ability to enhance care coordination;
  • 97% cited greater interoperability;
  • 95% cited the ability to improve care quality and reduce costs; and
  • 91% cited meeting meaningful use requirements.

Under the 2009 federal economic stimulus package, health care providers who demonstrate meaningful use of certified EHR systems can qualify for Medicaid and Medicare incentive payments.

Barriers to Health Data Exchange

When asked about the biggest barriers to health data exchange implementation:

  • 96% of respondents cited the cost and pace of required changes;
  • 95% cited concerns about financial sustainability, as well as data privacy and security;
  • 94% said concerns about the preparedness of EHR vendors; and
  • 93% cited a lack of interoperability.

Role of ONC

When asked about the role that the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT should play in facilitating health data exchange governance:

  • 67% of respondents said ONC should establish specific technical platforms or requirements for health data exchange;
  • 64% said ONC should disseminate best practices on health information exchange; and
  • 22% said ONC should establish regulations on health data exchange (Durben Hirsch, FierceEMR, 3/4).

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