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Carequality Interoperability Framework OKs Federal Participation

Allowing federal agencies to participate in the Carequality Interoperability Framework is expected to expand data exchange between the private sector and government agencies.

The Carequality Interoperability Framework has expanded its policy agreements to enable the participation of federal government agencies.

The nonprofit organization said that by extending participation to federal agencies, the framework can further patient data exchange across the private and public sectors.

“The Carequality Interoperability Framework is a living, evolving framework for health information exchange across networks, technologies, geographies, and now private sector-government boundaries,” Alan Swenson, executive director of Carequality, said in a press release.

“The more we can accommodate each and every type of organization and care setting that need access to electronic health information, the closer we get to the vision of true nationwide health data sharing. Federal agencies are a critical part of ensuring this vision.”

Private-sector agencies have been able to leverage the interoperability framework for patient data sharing since 2021. At that time, eHealth Exchange, the main way the public and private sector share health information, joined Carequality.

However, federal agencies needed specific policy language and contract agreements before participating through eHealth Exchange.

The updated Carequality Connected Agreement will allow federal agencies to opt into eHealth Exchange’s Carequality Bridge, giving the partners access to patient information from over 600,000 providers and 4,200 hospitals.

Since the company’s first document exchange in 2016, over 1 billion clinical document exchanges have been sent and received on the Carequality interoperability network. Allowing federal participation is an essential milestone in expanding exchange between the private sector and government agencies, Carequality stated.

“The eHealth Exchange seeks to support health information exchange as a public good infrastructure,” Jay Nakashima, executive director of the eHealth Exchange, said in a statement. “The more ways we enable exchange of patient data when, where, and how it is needed – the better.”

“We already support more than 1 billion transactions monthly, but we’ll always choose to expand that connectivity further to the benefit of our members and the healthcare providers and patients they serve – whether through Carequality, TEFCA, or whatever tomorrow brings,” Nakashima stated. “The eHealth Exchange and its members are excited about the new frontiers the industry is moving into.”

Carequality has expanded the number of participating members over the last few years.

In March 2022, MedAllies announced it had joined the Carequality Interoperability Framework.

As a Carequality Implementer, the health IT vendor and its participating clients do not undergo the Carequality technical certification process to exchange clinical summaries with any other Carequality Connection.

Through the framework, health IT partners access existing networks for care coordination and individual data sharing across providers, consumers, payers, government agencies, and public health agencies with MedAllies APIs.

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