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NY HIEs Launch SMART on FHIR App to Enhance Interoperability

The SMART on FHIR application will allow providers to access HIE information directly within their workflows, improving interoperability and data access.

Two New York-based health information exchanges (HIEs), Healthix and Hixny, joined forces to release a Smart on FHIR application that aims to drive interoperability and workflow efficiencies for New York providers.

“With increasing demands for comprehensive data and unencumbered access, Healthix reached out to Hixny to leverage a solution that works for busy providers seeking quick, efficient access to vital information,” Todd Rogow, president and CEO of Healthix, said in a public statement. “We saw an opportunity to build upon a growing partnership between our organizations and to share best practices, leveraging the expertise each public HIE brings to patients across New York State.”

Concise, the FHIR application, will eliminate the need for providers at half of the hospitals in New York State to navigate outside their native electronic medical records (EMR) system. Using this app, providers will be able to access health data through a patient record snapshot quickly, Hinxy stated.

Healthix is one of the largest HIEs in the country, bringing together over 8,000 healthcare facilities across New York City and Long Island.

“Our providers depend on us to be responsive and to derive value from participating in health information exchange,” explained Rogow. “Some of the city’s largest health systems have demonstrated interest in integrating Healthix Concise.”

The application is especially beneficial for complex networks that cross multiple hospitals and other facility types sharing the same EHR.

“For years, we [HINs] have been limited by EHRs,” said Mark McKinney, CEO of Hixny, referencing a blog post he wrote. “But with FHIR specifications being strongly promoted by the federal government to solve the problem of interoperability nationwide, we are beginning to gain serious traction."

“This patient record snapshot is just a scratch on the surface of the solutions we can provide using SMART on FHIR to support improvements in healthcare,” McKinney added.

The use of the FHIR standard has become more widespread across healthcare facilities as it can help streamline health information data exchange across different platforms.

In addition, the FHIR technology has helped providers comply with various directives made by the federal government’s Trusted Exchanged Framework and Common Agreement (TEFCA) over the past couple of years.

Healthcare interoperability has long been a critical goal for the industry.

In January 2022, ONC and its Recognized Coordinating Entity (RCE), The Sequoia Project, Inc., released the TEFCA interoperability framework to improve data exchange for providers.

The Trusted Exchange Framework is a set of non-binding but foundational principles for health information exchange, while the Common Agreement establishes the technical infrastructure and governing approach to support data exchange between healthcare organizations.

“Operationalizing TEFCA within the Biden Administration’s first year was a top priority for ONC and is critical to realizing the 21st Century Cures Act’s goal of a secure, nationwide health information exchange infrastructure,” Micky Tripathi, PhD, national coordinator for health information technology, noted in a press release.

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