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EHR Vendor Cerner Partners with SSA for Disability Claims Data Sharing

A new partnership between EHR vendor Cerner and the SSA aims to automate data sharing to simplify patient disability benefits claims.

EHR vendor Cerner has announced a new agreement with the Social Security Administration (SSA) that aims to simplify patient disability benefits claims through secure, clinical EHR data sharing from health systems.

Every year, the SSA requests over 15 million medical records from healthcare organizations to aid in decision-making for more than four million disability claims. SSA currently receives most medical records via fax or mail, which is the most frequent source of delay in the disability determination process.

The new partnership aims to speed up EHR data sharing from health systems to the SSA, potentially reducing transfer times from weeks or months to seconds or minutes.

“Cerner is proud to help the federal government better support those in need by getting them the benefits they are entitled to more quickly and efficiently,” Sam Lambson, Cerner vice president of interoperability, noted in a public statement.

“SSA’s work with Cerner will help streamline the process and is an important example of how systems that connect to each other can help improve our health and quality of life,” he added.

Some people with disabilities have lower levels of self-reported health and quality of life than those who do not have a disability, officials noted.

Faster disability decisions can help address socioeconomic challenges for patients through quicker access to monthly cash benefits. Additionally, earlier disability decisions may mean fewer consultative medical examinations and sooner access to insurance coverage and other social service benefits.

Cerner and SSA’s collaboration to automate data aims is set to eliminate the mailing of paper records to ease administrative burdens and reduce costs.

Officials said that the partnership will also benefit providers by automating payments from SSA and improving patient satisfaction.

The EHR vendor will pilot the solution with three of its clients in the coming months and plans to expand the offering to additional clients who choose to participate.

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