Master Data Management withing HIE Infrastructures: A Focu..

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Master Data Management withing HIE Infrastructures: A Focus on Master Patient Indexing Approaches

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free_59647 images for thegrcbluebook working on laptopHaving the right patient data, at the right place, at the right time is the goal of health information exchange (HIE). This starts with accurately capturing and coordinating a patient’s identity across multiple disparate organizations. If the information presented at the point of care is matched with the wrong patient, it is not only unusable, it is also dangerous for the patient. Delivering the right patient information is crucial to realizing the benefits of HIE. In the absence of a unique national identification number or some other unified way of identifying people and organizations, master data management (MDM), much science, and a bit of art, makes this important work possible.


MDM and master patient indexing (MPI) have developed over the last twenty years to offer organizations from banks to large retailers to health organizations a more consistent understanding of their customers’ identities and activities across diffuse networks and disparate systems. MDM solutions, which are integrated with other mission-critical systems, typically utilize two approaches to link peoples’ identities across multiple silos of data. Deterministic matching approaches attempt to line up different pieces of demographic information, such as last names or Social Security numbers, across source systems to look for exact matches. Probabilistic matching approaches, which are more sophisticated, attempt to deal in a more nuanced way with the inevitably error-filled, unstable nature of identifying information in source systems. Hybrid approaches may also be used.

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