FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 15, 2023
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USQHIN Announces Intention to Become a
Qualified Health Information Network
USQHIN intends to be designated by Sequoia Project to be a QHIN, reaffirming the organizations’
commitment to advancing interoperability at a national scale
SAN DIEGO – In a move that underscores the company’s commitment to interoperability, the United States Qualified Health Information Network (USQHIN), a wholly owned subsidiary of Velatura Public Benefit Corporation (Velatura) focused on rationalizing interstate data exchange at national scale, today announced at the opening of the Sequoia Project annual meeting that it will apply to become a Qualified Health Information Network (QHIN) under the Trusted Exchange Framework and Common Agreement (TEFCA).
USQHIN will submit a letter of intent to the Sequoia Project today indicating that the organization will submit its formal QHIN application in January 2024.
“Interoperability is essential for enhancing care coordination, improving the patient experience, and unlocking the full potential of whole-person healthcare,” said Dr. Tim Pletcher, DHA, Executive Director of USQHIN. “USQHIN is a leader in the safe, secure, and timely exchange of healthcare information, and becoming a QHIN is the next logical step in our journey to improve the care continuum by making valuable data available at the point of care. Achieving QHIN status would enable us to utilize our experience and expertise to influence policy and decision-making around interoperability and FHIR-based exchange.”
The 21st Century Cures Act, signed by President Obama in 2016, calls on the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology’s (ONC) to “develop or support a trusted exchange framework, including a common agreement among health information networks nationally.” TEFCA has 3 goals: (1) to establish a universal governance, policy, and technical floor for nationwide interoperability; (2) to simplify connectivity for organizations to securely exchange information to improve patient care, enhance the welfare of populations, and generate health care value; and (3) to enable individuals to gather their health care information.
“USQHIN is seeking QHIN designation to further broaden its ability to share critical healthcare information,” said Angie Bass, Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer. “We are proud to reaffirm our ongoing commitment to improving patient care by advancing the exchange of treatment, payment, public health and other healthcare-related data on a national scale. Under TEFCA, QHINs will create a secure and trusted network of networks that will facilitate a flow of information vital to advancing interoperability. Providers will have easier access to the clinical information they need at the point of care and patients will benefit from more informed, complete care regardless of where they go to receive it.”
USQHIN and parent company Velatura are highly respected, trusted and strategic partners for HIEs, HDUs, providers, payers, labs, patients, and public health officials that share aggregated health data. If accepted, QHIN designation would allow USQHIN to further extend this capability nationwide.
The Common Agreement, released in September 2021, includes six exchange purposes that organizations must support to be designated as a QHIN. The exchange purposes include Treatment, Payment, Health Care Operations, Public Health, Benefits Determination, and Individual Access Services.
USQHIN currently provides several core services required by the ONC for QHIN certification, including Query and Response for EHI requests from participants, end user Message Delivery to assure that information is seamlessly passed to its final destination from QHIN to QHIN, Individual Access Services giving patients control of their information, Meaningful Choice for individuals to determine how their personal ePHI is disclosed and used and ADT Hub, which is architected to increase the volume and quality of admission, discharge, and transfer messages available to public and private participants.
USQHIN becomes the twentieth candidate to formally seek QHIN status. There are currently seven “Candidate QHINS,” including: CommonWell Health Alliance, eHealth Exchange, Epic, Health Gorilla, Kno2, KONZA National Network and MedAllies. These are organizations that have had their applications accepted and are in the testing and project plan completion phase of the application process.
The United States QHIN (USQHIN) is an alternative nationwide health information network, focused on rationalizing interstate data exchange at national scale. USQHIN engages public and private stakeholders and advances emerging use cases in support of urgent public health needs and federal interoperability goals. USQHIN is part of The Constellation, including Velatura Public Benefit Corporation, the Interoperability Institute and the Michigan Health Information Network Shared Services. The organizations offer a comprehensive interoperability strategy and a product and services portfolio that continues to transform healthcare and health information exchange in Michigan and across the nation. For more information, visit: https://usqhin.org.
About Velatura Public Benefit Corporation
Velatura Public Benefit Corporation creatively connects and aligns people, organizations, technology, ideas, and information in both the public and private sectors to improve healthcare, reduce costs and to increase satisfaction of stakeholders in the health IT value chain. Through its operating units of Velatura Services, Velatura HIE Corp and USQHIN, Velatura Public Benefit Corporation looks to service the landscape of needs across the country for sustainable interoperability. For more information, visit www.velatura.org