Collaborative event focuses on building solutions to health care issues

Lansing, MICH. – Community building was front and center at the Interoperability Institute’s (IOI) first virtual InterOpathon event last month. The event, which took place on May 27 and 28, brought together leaders in health care information technology from across the country to build interoperability solutions needed for compliance with new federal government health care regulations. The InterOpathon venue enabled knowledge sharing and building of software solutions that address current health care issues.

The annual event, which was moved entirely online this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, focuses on understanding how organizations can translate interoperability standards into real-world solutions. Attendees were placed into virtual teams and tasked with creating a solution to an advanced health care use case.   The event’s program committee consisted of national leaders from the Health Level Seven® (HL7®) Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR®) Accelerator Programs.

Use case challenges for the event align with the HL7 FHIR implementation guides:

  • CARIN Alliance provides IG for consumer access to health care information
  • DaVinci Project supports Payer-Provider solutions that positively impact clinical, quality, cost and care management outcomes
  • Gravity provides IG that address social determinants of health, such as housing security
  • Project Unify extends the HL7 standard to human services, such as child protective services

Participating teams had complete access to a robust simulation environment called Interoperability Land™, that provides a health care ecosystem, loaded with synthetic data packs, access to Application Programing Interfaces (APIs) and cloud services provided by team sponsors.

“The need for a robust API-enabled data exchange is more salient than ever, as the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted how important it is to be able to share information quickly and securely,” said Dr. Tim Pletcher, Executive Director of the Michigan Health Information Network Shared Services. “A large focus of the InterOpathon is helping organizations prepare for compliance with the 21st Century Cures Act final rules from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) for Health Information. Complying with these data regulations is imperative both during the pandemic and beyond.”

This year’s sponsors include Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Cloudticity, Diameter Health, Priority Health, MichiganLabs, Lyniate and Augusto.

“The Interoperability Institute is proud to be a leader in innovative solutions that work for real-world health care environments” said Mary Kratz, Executive Vice President, IOI. “As evidenced by the Interoperability Land ™ simulator, we strive to continuously work on solutions that improve data access, use and cybersecurity – enabling collaboration with other health information networks across the country to develop solutions and share best practices.”

In total, nine submissions were received as part of the challenge. United Together – Social Determinants of Health came in first place, with Team 7 – Prior Authorization and the FHIR Men – Caredocket coming in second and third respectively. More information on the event and a full list of winners is available here.


About Michigan Health Information Network Shared Services

The Michigan Health Information Network Shared Services (MiHIN) is Michigan’s state-designated entity to improve health care quality, efficiency, and patient safety by sharing electronic health information statewide, helping reduce costs for patients, providers, and payers. MiHIN is a nonprofit, public-private collaboration that includes stakeholders from the State of Michigan, Health Information Exchanges serving Michigan, health systems and providers, health plans/payers, pharmacies, and the Governor’s Health Information Technology Commission. For more information, visit