CONSUMER ENGAGEMENT IN HEALTH INFORMATION EXCHANGE

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CONSUMER ENGAGEMENT IN HEALTH INFORMATION EXCHANGE

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free_100241 iamges for thegrcbluebook business man on phoneThe ultimate goal of health information exchange (HIE) is to have the right patient information, in the right place, at the right time. There are a number of ways this can and is being accomplished today. An important but as yet not fully developed avenue of exchange is consumer mediated exchange. In a fragmented information environment, where silos of electronic data and paper records are the norm instead of an exception, many consumers have mediated the exchange of their or a loved one’s health information among providers out of necessity.

Traditionally, this has meant numerous, tedious phone calls to ensure that records are sent where they need to go or even shuttling paper records from one medical office to another. Even as electronic HIE becomes more prevalent, consumers will undoubtedly play an important role in managing their own and their family members’ health information. Some of this engagement will occur by choice—as technology empowers patients to access and better control how information is exchanged—and some out of necessity, as health information organizations (HIOs) will not always be able to supply the right data at the point of care in every situation.

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