What Can HIEs Do to Overcome Interoperability Barriers?

Cost and technical barriers?

Overcoming interoperability barriers

As soon as you hear the word “interoperability” in healthcare, “cost” and “complexity” are right around the corner. If you’re a technical leader at an HIE, this won’t come as a shock. In a recent survey, 59% of HIEs see the cost of interface development as a barrier. And another 38% view technical difficulty in interfacing as their biggest hurdle.

So what’s the solution? 

For starters, there is no easy technical fix. Direct messaging can tackle some use cases. You can look at FHIR down the road. And maybe regulators will scrap the use of standards that are still under development (C-CDA, we’re looking at you).

But there’s no waving a magic wand and making HL7 v2.x interfaces disappear.

Here are 5 recommendations to deal with the core need and make it easier to develop and manage interfaces and overcome interoperability barriers:

  1. Get a hold of the requirements process. Better HL7 requirements give you better communication, with more trust and confidence around what the team is actually developing – and less revisiting the obvious. Read more about HL7 requirements
  2. Agree on testing upfront. Here’s a testing checklist to get you started
  3. Document workflows for your interfaces. Not convinced it’ll help? Read why you should
  4. Make sure the test environment is set up right. Here’s how to get started
  5. Documentation HL7 profiles and specs. Not just for development requirements but also for the rest of the interface lifecycle. Read our two-part series on documenting HL7 profiles and specs: Part 1 and Part 2.

Caristix software and HIEs: interface lifecycle management 

You can cut interface development time – and cut waste from the entire interface lifecycle with Caristix software. Learn more via the Caristix Workgroup on-demand demo.