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HIT Leaders Establish Interoperability Measurement Model at KLAS Summit

September 8, 2016
by Rajiv Leventhal
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At last month’s KLAS Cornerstone Summit, industry leaders established a new interoperability benchmark and measurement model to assess performance and progress.

The framework, agreed upon by industry representatives, is largely based on the 2016 Interoperability KLAS study design, which focuses on the clinical end users’ experience related to the following: (1) availability of needed information, (2) ease of locating records, (3) ability to view outside records within the clinical workflow and (4) impact on patient care. The five-level reporting structure will aim to allow for seamless communication to the industry about current positions and improvements in interoperability progress. Implementation of the framework is scheduled to begin in 2017.

Last fall at the KLAS Keystone Summit in Utah, key electronic health record (EHR) solution executives and healthcare provider organizations convened to discuss interoperability challenges facing the industry. Some of the biggest names in health IT were present at that meeting, such as Micky Tripathi, Ph.D., president and CEO of Massachusetts eHealth Collaborative, and John Halamka, M.D., CIO Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center; and Stan Huff, M.D., CMIO, Intermountain Healthcare. The idea was to get agreement to a baseline way, similar to Consumer Reports, to measure interoperability.

Conceivably, this is a next step in that process. At the Cornerstone Summit, participants also recommended an expanded interoperability measurement road map to include the sharing of information from and between post–acute care facilities, the gathering of feedback from clinicians regarding interoperable information utility, and medical device integration and effective use.

Later this month, the Orem, Utah-based KLAS is scheduled to publish its KLAS Interoperability report, which highlights significant interoperability immaturities with preliminary findings serving as a starting point for discussion among the cross-industry team of providers, vendors, ONC leadership and other health IT facilitator organizations who participated in the Summit, noted KLAS officials.

“We are extremely pleased with the engagement and feedback from healthcare industry leaders, including our federal partners, further advancing our joint efforts to measure interoperability,” Tim Zoph, independent chair of the KLAS Interoperability Measurement Advisory Team (IMAT), said in a statement. “As a result of our conference work sessions and consensus building, we affirmed our current interoperability survey approach with agreed-upon modification, advanced a new performance scorecard to measure vendor and collective performance and crafted an initial long-term measurement framework that will expand the measurement dimensions to encompass the breadth of interoperability for our industry. We look forward to continuing our work together as we recognize that the collective perspectives and talent in the industry must come together to address the challenges of interoperability. Our conference attendees are committed to measuring and facilitating the flow of healthcare information, improving its usability and ultimately impacting the efficiency and effectiveness of patient care.”

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