Why Is True Interoperability Crucial To Healthcare’s Future?

Kyle Murphy | EHR Intelligence | January 6, 2014

As the work between the Departments of Defense (DOD) and Veterans Affairs (VA) has shown, true EHR interoperability is no small feat. The two federal agencies have put in considerable time, energy, and resources and still find themselves short of achieving fully interoperable EHR systems and under the gun with Congress demanding to see a detailed plan by the end of the month.

While this process is playing out at the federal level, it has implications for the rest of the healthcare industry at a more local level wherever clinicians are engaged in care delivery, says Mark Hamra, DO, Chief Medical Officer at Harris Healthcare Solutions.

“One of the interesting things about what the DOD and VA are doing is that they are of extreme interest to the commercial world because it leads to a couple of things,” he tells EHRIntelligence.com. “It reduces vendor lock. Improving interoperability and having an open implementation standard that people can build to allow for innovation. The most exciting thing in the commercial world and what they’re looking at watching this project is: Can we innovate with it?”