Last year, the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) launched the Blue Button 2.0 API for Medicare fee-for-service, allowing beneficiaries to access health claims information electronically through the application of their choosing. CMS requires Medicare Advantage organizations, state Medicaid and CHIP Programs, Medicaid Managed Care Plans, CHIP managed care entities, & QHP issuers to implement, test, & monitor openly-published Health Level Seven (HL7®) Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR®) based APIs to make patient claims & other health information available to patients through third-party applications & developers. HL7-FHIR bridges the gaps between all parties that need access to patient data. Digitization of health records makes patient information and care instruction more available & discoverable.
What is in it for you?
FHIR based Interoperability allows more effective data exchange, and delivers key objectives – strong foundation for HIEs within State, efficiency and affordability, and collective advocacy. Many EMRs do not offer an effective way to extract, transform, and load data, so FHIR based Interoperability will lead the path. It will benefit Regional Health Information Organizations, Qualified Entities, and allow participating healthcare professionals (Payers & Providers) with patient consent, to quickly access electronic health information and securely exchange data. FHIR will boost the ability to work with HIE Vendor systems & capabilities (i.e. Mirth Results, Intersystems Healthshare, etc.). FHIR® standard could be used to capture, integrate, and exchange clinical data for research purposes too. FHIR Use Cases could include Data Acquisition, Data Ingestion, Data Transfer, Workflow Integration, Patient Access, Patient Registration, Care Coordination, Compliance & Audit, among others.