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The FEHRM Expands the Joint Health Information Exchange

Image of The FEHRM Expands the Joint Health Information Exchange. In August 2023, the Federal Electronic Health Record Modernization office expanded its joint health information exchange to include participation in Carequality, a framework enabling health data sharing between and among networks.

In August 2023, the Federal Electronic Health Record Modernization office expanded its joint health information exchange to include participation in Carequality, a framework enabling health data sharing between and among networks.

“The joint HIE is the largest federal exchange in the U.S. With this expansion, we are leading the way in meaningfully sharing data across health care systems to enhance care delivery,” said Bill Tinston, director of the FEHRM.

The joint HIE is a secure gateway used to connect the federal electronic health record to participating provider organizations across the United States who agree to securely share clinical information with the Department of Defense, Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Homeland Security’s U.S. Coast Guard, and Department of Commerce’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Participating in Carequality significantly expands the percentage of U.S. hospitals connected to the joint HIE from 75% to more than 90%. DOD, VA, USCG and NOAA clinicians, nurses, and administrators gain access to an expanded set of patients’ external health records from participating provider organizations—from single-physician offices to multi-hospital systems outside of the DOD, VA, USCG and NOAA health care systems. Other organizations previously unable to query these departments can now retrieve data from them.

“This expansion reflects the collaborative work of the FEHRM and the departments to enhance the care experience for our patients and providers,” said Tinston. “It helps ensure a seamless care experience for patients navigating between different health care systems.

Through the joint HIE, providers may access information about their patients’ prescriptions, allergies, illnesses, lab and radiology results, immunizations, past medical procedures, and medical notes.

The joint HIE is part of the FEHRM’s overarching effort to deliver capabilities that enable the departments to deploy a single, common federal EHR. By implementing the same EHR, the departments can better document care from the time individuals enter the military through their care as veterans, including care they receive from participating provider organizations—viewable through the joint HIE.

“With this more complete view of an individual’s medical history, providers can make better informed decisions,” said Lance Scott, acting technical director and solutions integration director of the FEHRM. “This data sharing drives enhanced health care quality, safety, and provider and patient satisfaction.”

The joint HIE is part of DOD and VA health care benefits, and DOD beneficiaries and veterans are automatically enrolled. The joint HIE honors patient consent; health records of patients who opt out of sharing will not be exchanged through the joint HIE. Learn more about the joint HIE on the FEHRM website.

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