The delivery of high quality and efficient health care while improving outcomes remains a critical goal of every health system across the globe. Significant progress has been made in the past ten years towards achieving this goal. However, due to a lack of interoperable data and information exchange, health systems and personalized care applications have been impeded from the accelerated innovation and disruption that has fueled other industries.
The emergence of HL7® FHIR® (Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources) has energized the health informatics community. Recognizing this unprecedented opportunity, HIMSS, HL7 International and IHE International will form the Global Consortium for eHealth Interoperability, dedicated to help coordinate, support, and advance digital health efficiency and innovation based on interoperability standards.
The primary goal of this Consortium is to coordinate the implementation of effective health data standards on a global scale, with goals to accelerate the development and adoption of open, standards-based APIs in healthcare, define an on-ramp for exchange via APIs and support the establishment of implementation communities around the world. To achieve this, the Consortium will convene stakeholder organizations such as national government agencies, provider health systems, leading technology market suppliers and medical device manufacturers.
The Consortium will seek to expedite progress toward interoperability across the entire health ecosystem by:
- Providing Clear Guidance to Stakeholders Across the Health Ecosystem: Reinforce cooperation among complementary standards efforts and provide advice to implementers on how best to apply the most appropriate standards to effectively achieve business goals and improve health care outcomes through interoperability initiatives.
- Accelerating the Adoption of Implementation-Ready Standards: Develop and coordinate the implementation of a strategic vision, use cases and roadmap to advance interoperability. Accelerate development, testing and application of a common set of consistent, high quality standards that efficiently incorporate feedback from early adopters and enable a global market for sustainable large-scale deployment. Advance public policy or legal changes that accelerate and support standards development, adoption, interpretation, and return on investment.
- Supporting Early Adopters: Accelerate adoption by developing resources and tools to support innovative health systems and market suppliers who pilot, test, and implement interoperability standards. Support adoption and innovation by strengthening the development feedback loop once technologies are deployed to inform ongoing product development and real-world testing programs.
HIMSS is a global advisor and thought leader supporting the transformation of the health ecosystem through information and technology. As a mission-driven non-profit, HIMSS offers a unique depth and breadth of expertise in health innovation, public policy, workforce development, research and analytics to advise global leaders, stakeholders and influencers on best practices in health information and technology. Through its innovation engine, HIMSS delivers key insights, education and engaging events to healthcare providers, governments and market suppliers, ensuring they have the right information at the point of decision.
Health Level Seven International (HL7) is a not-for-profit, ANSI-accredited standards developing organization dedicated to providing a comprehensive framework and related standards for the exchange, integration, sharing and retrieval of electronic health information that supports clinical practice and the management, delivery and evaluation of health services. HL7 is supported by more than 1,600 members from over 50 countries, including 500+ corporate members representing healthcare providers, government stakeholders, payers, pharmaceutical companies, vendors/suppliers, and consulting firms.
IHE is an initiative by healthcare professionals and industry to improve the way computer systems in healthcare share information. IHE promotes the coordinated use of established standards such as DICOM and HL7 to address specific clinical needs in support of optimal patient care. Systems developed in accordance with IHE communicate with one another better, are easier to implement, and enable care providers to use information more effectively.