Interoperability – A Challenge in 2015
10 years ago, interoperability didn’t mean much to healthcare organizations. Things have certainly changed. The three-year goal of the ONC’s 10-year roadmap is for providers and patients to be able to send, receive, find, and use basic health information. The six and ten-year goals then build on the initial objectives, improving interoperability into the future.
Congress has also shown initiative on promoting interoperability asking the ONC to investigate information blocking by EHRs. Most of the ONC’s roadmap for the next three years is similar to Meaningful Use Stage 2 goals.
Sixty-four percent of Americans do not use patient portals, so for 2015 healthcare organizations should focus on creating them, refining their workflows, and encouraging patients to use them. Additionally, 35 percent of patients said they are unaware of patient portals, while 31 percent said their physician has never mentioned them. Fifty-six percent of patients ages 55-64, and 46 percent of patients 65 and older, said they would access medical information more if it were available online. Hospitals need their own staff to use and promote patient portals in order to conquer the challenges of interoperability and Stage 2.