• Ken Hornung

Radical Interoperability Hot Topic at Healthcare Innovation Pacific Northwest Summit


Female doctor showing medical information on an iPad

At Healthcare Innovation's Pacific Northwest Summit in October, emTRUTH CEO Irene Woerner and I joined more than one hundred leaders in the healthcare industry for two days of presentations covering everything from the migration of value-based healthcare, managing cyber security, and the pressing need for a digital transformation strategy. As you might expect, the emTRUTH team was thrilled to hear the rally call for ‘radical interoperability’ and data informatics as a means of improving patient care.


Keynote speakers Anna Taylor, assistant vice president, Population Health, and Value-Based Care at MultiCare Health System, and Bradd Busick, senior vice president, and chief information officer, at MultiCare Health System, talked about how the lines between traditional IT, operations and traditional healthcare are becoming blurred. MultiCare has become a role model for innovation and was named one of the country’s “Most Wired” health organizations for 2022. Anna pointed out the need for an agile strategy for alignment and the need for “radical interoperability” to provide high-quality data for governance.


Along those lines, Jim Whitfill, MD, chief transformation officer at HonorHealth, focused on how value-based care relies on access to data across the continuum and alignment of care providers. Still, more insight into the migration to value-based care was discussed with Deepak Sadagopan, senior vice president, Value-Based Care, and Population Health Informatics, at Providence. Deepak shared ideas concerning risk management and the need for data informatics to accommodate change. Perhaps there is no greater incentive for providers operating on negative margins to transform their models than the point made that those that are in better shape have made the transition to value-based care with significant portions of their business in full risk-bearing contracts.


In the healthcare industry, there are myriad different systems in use, from electronic health records (EHRs) to hospital administration systems. For healthcare providers to be able to provide the best possible care for their patients, it is essential that these different systems be able to talk to each other and share data.


Interoperability has been a hot topic in healthcare for years now, but unfortunately, progress has been slow. That is why the call for radical interoperability at the Healthcare Innovation's Pacific Northwest Summit is so important. It is also why we are so passionate about the emTRUTH mission to help healthcare organizations unlock secure access to all their data.


The data they need to improve care. Reduce costs. Drive faster, less expensive, more powerful clinical research. Enable true collaboration. While enabling the control they need to ensure security and privacy compliance.


We know that only by working together will we be able to create a healthcare system that is truly patient-centered and efficient. Radical interoperability is not just something we talk about; it is something we can actually do.


The Need for Interoperability


For the healthcare system to be effective, every stakeholder needs to be able to work together seamlessly. A study by Black Book Research found that 80% of hospitals were unable to exchange patient health information with outside providers due to a lack of interoperability.


This lack of interoperability can have profound consequences for patients. For example, if a patient goes to the emergency room and the hospital does not have access to their medical history, the ER doctors may not know about any allergies or medications they are taking. This can lead to dangerous situations and even life-threatening errors.


Another consequence of a lack of interoperability is inefficiency. When different systems are not able to communicate with each other, it increases the chances for errors and duplicate work. This can waste valuable time and resources that could be better used elsewhere.


The Importance of Data Sharing


For interoperability to truly work, there needs to be a free flow of data between different systems. Unfortunately, due to concerns about data security and privacy, many healthcare providers are hesitant to share patient data with outside parties due to fears that it could be leaked or hacked.


While these concerns are certainly valid, it is important to embrace the need to share data and forge ahead. The best care for a patient requires collaboration between all care providers.


The call for radical interoperability at Healthcare Innovation's Pacific Northwest Summit was an important one. For the healthcare system to truly be effective, different parts need to be able to stop working in silos and start working together seamlessly, exchanging data freely. Only by working together will we be able to create a healthcare system that is truly patient-centered and efficient.


About emTRUTH

emTRUTH unlocks the power of healthcare data. We do this by making it quick and easy for healthcare users (who are not IT experts) to securely combine and share data on demand while they, and their patients, retain full ownership and control of their data. The company's patented technology offers fast and secure horizontal or vertical data integration and interoperability of any type of data. With one API. From anywhere. Using any standard. To any app. In days, not months. For less. For more information, visit www.emtruth.com or connect with us on LinkedIn.


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