SHIEC Proclaims, “HIEs are Thriving!”
Nationwide Consortium of HIEs Celebrates 67% Year-over-year Growth and Heralds Common Successes During Annual User Conference
The Strategic Health Information Exchange Collaborative (SHIEC) (@SHIEClive), a national trade association representing health information exchanges (HIEs), convened its members in Indianapolis, Ind. for its annual user conference. Members are celebrating the culmination of another successful year for the young organization. The reasons to celebrate include significant year-over-year growth, expansion of the types of activities SHIEC engages in, and greater national patient coverage. The association is also using the conference to announce its national rollout plan for its Patient Centered Data HomeTM initiative.
SHIEC has grown its HIE membership 67% since its 2016 annual conference. The association now represents 55 HIEs and five associate members, easily the largest consortium of HIEs in the country. Since the organization was founded in 2014, the growth rate is even higher, topping 175% since its inception. SHIEC HIE members now serve almost 75% of the nation’s patient population.
“SHIEC continues to grow, even during a time when there are fewer HIEs on the market, because SHIEC plays a unique role in the market,” said Kelly Hoover Thompson, SHIEC’s new CEO. “Like every new industry, the HIE market has undergone consolidation. Weaker business models struggle, but stronger businesses thrive and gain market share. One of the great values of SHIEC is that we have some of the most successful HIEs in the country as members. Because we provide a highly collaborative environment where HIEs learn from each other and counsel each other, we’ve been able to elevate the state of the entire HIE market by propagating the use of best practices nationwide.”
HIEs actively work together through SHIEC to share best practices, promote health data interoperability, and stay on top of the technologies and regulations that drive the health IT market in support of patient care.
In addition to HIE member growth, SHIEC stood up a Strategic Business & Technology (SB&T) partner program to encourage strong dialog between HIEs and the technology community, and since its formation right after the 2016 annual conference, the program already has 30 members.
Expansion of Role of HIEs
As the vanguards of health IT in their respective communities, HIEs made progress in 2017 toward more completely integrating the full spectrum of healthcare organizations in their regions. HIEs are currently doing compelling work in integrating organizations focused on behavioral health and substance abuse into their broader health IT interoperability networks. They are looking beyond simply integrating electronic health records (EHRs) and pharmacy systems to inclusively account for all types of care organizations, ranging from health researchers to nursing homes. The work in expanding interoperability services helps HIEs support better care for patients by helping ensure physicians have all relevant information they need to provide the best possible care.
In addition to individual HIEs expanding their coverage in their respective regions, collectively HIEs have been able to work together on initiatives to improve nationwide interoperability. SHIEC will use its conference to detail the nationwide rollout strategy for its Patient Centered Data Home (PCDH) initiative and outline the timeline for the initiative going live on a national level. PCDH is a significant interoperability effort that allows for alerting and record sharing between HIEs when a patient is treated outside of their local area.
Celebrating a Year of Successes
The success of the annual conference mirrors the success of the organization itself. This year’s conference is for members only and reached record attendance. Highlights for the conference include: a PCDH update; a keynote from Dr. Don Rucker, the National Coordinator for Health IT; and a listening session hosted by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC); and exhibits from SHIEC’s SB&T partners.
SHIEC is the national trade association of health information exchanges (HIEs) and strategic business and technology partners. As the unbiased data trustees in their communities, the 50+ member HIE organizations manage and provide for the secure digital exchange of data by medical, behavioral, and social service providers to improve the health of the communities they serve. Collectively, SHIEC members serve almost 75% of the U.S. population.