C4UHC News Curation of Fierce Health Article: “What’s Holding Back Health IT Interoperability in 2023? ONC Has Some Thoughts”

Closeup of a medical professional accessing a patient's records on a laptop

Interoperability Remains an Unnecessary Challenge Throughout the Medical Ecosystem – Fierce Healthcare

A recent government report on medical providers’ progress in adopting electronic health records (EHR) reflects how establishing standards is a challenge throughout the healthcare ecosystem, not just in vendor credentialing of medical suppliers.

According to Fierce Health, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) cites the U.S. health system’s “tremendous progress” on creating and sharing electronic health information. As of 2021, 96% of non-federal acute care hospitals and nearly four in five office-based physicians use an EHR certified by the ONC.

However, 70% of non-federal acute care facilities had at least one challenge in public health reporting, emphasizing the need to modernize the systems connecting these hospitals with public health entities by using standardized application programming interfaces, for example. These deficiencies in sharing critical data became glaringly obvious during COVID-19.

Establishing standards is also crucial in making healthcare vendor credentialing more efficient.

But we don’t need to modernize and create a high-tech national credentialing system to embrace interoperability. We don’t even need a national database. Healthcare providers need to agree on and follow a set of standards at the national level and follow them. It’s a low-tech, low-cost solution that will yield tremendous benefits in reduced time and labor needs while increasing patient safety.

You don’t have to be high-tech to be interoperable, and that’s what we’re advocating at C4UHC.

Read more about current EHR interoperability wins and challenges in Fierce Health’s “What’s Holding Back Healthcare IT Interoperability? ONC Has Some Thoughts.”