Exchange of Health Data

Junior (College 3rd year) ・Healthcare&Medicine ・APA ・6 Sources

Sharing information is an integral part of assisting people in doing things better. It's an agreement between organizations to share medical data in a single location where everyone can see it, with the sole purpose of improving services. The data may be shared across a country, a community, or any other area of mutual interest. It aids in treating those who may have similar cases in the future by learning how patients arrived at a hospital, how they were treated, and how they reacted. As a result, the term HIE refers to the entity that makes this exchange possible.

HIE Structure and Types

Different stakeholders in the process help to promote the exchange of health information. The structure depends on who has the control of the information and who among the patient and the health facility has the final say. While some cases will see health facilities share the information, some structures demand that the patient has to sanction the transfer. HIE information exchange systems are being developed for data sharing and distribution (Pooja, 2017). It is in three fundamental sections namely;
• Direct exchange. As the name sounds, the healthcare institutions will enjoy a direct exchange of information. They can send and receive patient data, laboratory orders and results, discharge summaries among many other orders through a secured network. The part of the internet that sends the data should be encrypted for secure transfer and must have reliable messaging platforms.
• Query-Based Exchange. In cases where information is required in emergency circumstances, the health providers have an avenue of requesting that it be availed. It can communicate with other health providers for them to share the information which will be fundamental to the health Improvement of their patient. Such cases are applicable where the patient has symptoms that cannot be pointed to a particular condition, and the health officers have to make a further investigation before administering medication.
• A Consumer-Mediated Exchange. In the form of information exchange, patients have a control of their information on the internet. In cases where something is inaccurate, they can contribute by changing some aspects of the information. They can correct their demographics, the billing information, and at the same time track and monitor their health status. The patients are allowed to collect all their information in one portal and share with their physicians.

Role of Clinical terminologies and Data standards

Clinical terminologies are important for each field of study. It determines the professionalism and is used to easily determine the individuals that are truly attached to the field, and those that might be impersonalizing people within the field of study. Healthcare fraud is a fundamental weakness to the US healthcare system. In effect, it affects the ability to enhance patient care and provide quality care. It is, therefore, important to consider classification and terminology. It helps in seeing through data quality and compliance with state regulations and rules. The HIE system has its clinical terminologies (Slabodkin, 2017).

Challenges to HIE

Any form of technology and good ideas will always have challenges that if managed well, will see the light of day and be able to function as intended. Health Information Exchange is a form of technology where people share health information between hospitals through an organization with the aim of improving service delivery to the patients. The process has always faced challenges which include;

Fading federal and local government sponsorship

Over time, there has been reduced funding from the local and federal government, and it has greatly hampered the implementation of HIE. To roll out the program efficiently, one it needs the support of the state in asking organizations to join and support the whole process financially.

Rapid changing technology that offers better alternatives

In the world of technology, there are always better ways to handle issues. This predicament has befallen the Health Information Exchange for it has been, in some cases, overtaken by events. People keep on finding better ways of accessing patient data and exchanging information, which has negatively impacted on the growth of the Heath and Information Exchange. Despite great efforts to make the technology to work, competition increases and slows cooperation (Staff, 2011).

Lack of Interoperability standards

There is the need for information in this system to work for the common good of the people. Therefore, authorities responsible should make sure that they maintain standards that are visible to all stakeholders to make it useful. Therefore, the lack of agreeable standards is pulling behind efforts to make Health Information Exchange useful.

The slow pace of adoption of HIE by stakeholders

Many stakeholders do not see a huge impact that the HIE program will bring to society. Instead, they feel that health facilities will benefit more than the rest of the society. Therefore, they have the minimum motivation to support the whole process. This in effect has slowed the pace of adoption of the program by stakeholders.

Benefits of HIE to stakeholders

• Reduces redundancy and unnecessary testing. Health Information Exchange reduces repetition of work. When information has been share, and you get a patient that has the same case, it will be easy just to do tests that confirm that illness instead of beginning from the initial level. Therefore, it cuts on unnecessary tests.
• Reduces costs of health care. When the tests have been reduced, the hospital incurs the minimal cost of testing, and therefore, it will reduce the price for the patient. It is a win-win situation. HIE reduces the cost of healthcare for providers (Turnage, 2017).
• Improves health care outcomes and quality. Other health facilities have an opportunity to further research on a condition that has seen, and it would result in improved outcomes and quality of treatment.
• Improves reporting on health care. Records are vital to any activity. In Health Information Exchange, it acts as a platform for health reporting. All information for a patient and reports can be generated from the system. Additionally, it can be clear for research purposes, in that, it can be understood, how many patients have suffered from specific illnesses within a timeframe.
• Improves the safety of patients by reducing errors. Doing something many times, while at the same looking at how others have done it will make you improve on the way of handling issues. HIE enables health facilities to share information that gives knowledge on how operations are done and help in reducing errors in the future.
• Improved efficiency by eliminating paperwork. Health Information Exchange is an advancement in technology where information is moved through the internet and people on the other side benefit. It is an efficient process that eliminates paperwork, which would be tiresome and costly to the stakeholders.
• Gives caregivers additional decision support. Decisions in the case of HIE is made after careful research and asking questions about the prevailing situation. Therefore, HIE has brought positive decision support where healthcare givers can get more information about what they want to decide.

Significance of data quality Characteristics in HIE

• Accuracy and Precision
The accuracy of data is essential to any part that uses t for any particular reason. The case is not different for Health Information Exchange data. The information that needs to be transferred from one health facility to the other needs to be accurate. The data is used as a reference point for treating other patients at the other end. Therefore, the data should be precise and not cast doubt. Otherwise, the data used can be misleading and end up harming patients and the reputation of other health facilities. Data quality is often described as the totality of features of a data set with the ability to satisfy the intended purpose (Wickramasinghe et al., 2005).
• Legitimacy and Validity.
Any information that is shared among individuals needs to be legitimate and valid. In the sense of the word, legitimate data is data that originates from the right source. In this case, the data should emanate from people in the profession who are an authority. Being an authority means that the person is trained and is a member of a professional body that is mandated to qualify people as full responsible doctors and other professional.
• Reliability and Consistency.
Data that is not reliable cannot be used to help other people. Reliability of data means that the source is trustworthy and it has been confirmed by other parties. Reliability of data is also given if that source has previously given that that was useful. Data to be used must always be consistent. If it is addressing a particular issue, it should always have the same content. Data to be used in HIE should possess the reliability and consistency characteristic of data.
• Timeliness and Relevance.
No one person needs that is untimely. Timely data is one that is available when needed for a particular function. When there is an emergency, any information needed should be availed promptly. On the same note, timely information should be relevant for the purpose it was asked for. The relevance of data in HIE is essential because it makes it useful. If checked but seen not be relevant, then the data will not be used and ought not to be asked for. It is essential to provide timely information that meets the identified objectives (Hisek & Staus, 2013). Therefore, HIE information should always be checked for timeliness and relevance to the situation.
• Completeness and Comprehensiveness.
Everyone hates information that is not complete and comprehensive. It is a data characteristic that is cherished by many data users and it helps them solve their challenges in totality. Complete information can save time which would be used to confirm some aspects of the information. Comprehensive data is helpful as it is adequate to solve the problem.
• Availability and Accessibility.
The essence of Health Information Exchange is making useful data available and accessible to all parties that need it. When a health facility needs data, it needs to be available and easily accessible for all parties.
• Granularity and Uniqueness.
Health Information Exchange needs data that is essential for the intended purposes. The data should be unique to health information that people can use.

Interest in HIE

Health Information Exchange is an integral part of the society. It helps people through health facilities get quick solutions to all the challenges. In general, the HIE program helps society in making advance its healthcare which is an overall goal of the society.


Hosek, S. D., & Straus, S. G. (2013). Patient privacy, consent, and identity management in health information exchange: Issues for the military health system.
P. (2017, October 30). New Study: Global Outlook for Health Information Exchange Market Forecast to 2025. Retrieved November 10, 2017, from http://www.military-
Turnage, W. (2017, February 9). Benefits of Health Information Exchange | dhcf. Retrieved from
Slabodkin, G. (2017, February 1). Emerging FHIR standard just the start of interoperability efforts. Retrieved from
Staff, G. (2011, November 14). The Top 5 roadblocks HIEs face. Retrieved from
Wickramasinghe, N., Gupta, J. N., & Sharma, S. K. (2005). Creating knowledge-based healthcare organizations. Hershey, PA: Idea Group Pub.

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