Tag: eHealth

Ontario EMR Specification v4.0 FINAL version released

Ontario  EMR version 4.0 specification(final) was released couple of days ago by Ontario MD for EMR vendors to apply for funding offering and comply with version 4.0 requirements.


Here is the link to the schedule and version 4.0 requirements.


Version 4.0 has some key requirements from a jurisdictional EHR or document exchange between healthcare provider point of view.  One of the key requirement is the requirement for EMR vendors to implement Hospital Report Manager specification to enable transfer of clinical documents like discharge summaries, transcribed reports (radiology, lab and others) from healthcare providers (mainly acute care hospitals) to primary care physicians(PCP) using an EMR.

This is great first step forward to enable the family doc to receive discharge summary from the hospital before the patient shows at the doc’s office and EHR.  Though at a provincial level this standard (Hospital Report Manager) doesn’t seem to align with the Ontario Clinical Document Specification, which is currently under public review as well.

Friends at eHealth, kindly take a note of this.  I am reviewing the CDS and will be submitting my comments through the public review forum as well.

Saravana Rajan

State of Health Information Exchanges: New Report

eHealth Initiative released a new report on the state of Health Information Exchange in the US and here are my findings and view of the survey.

Key Findings:

  • 234 active health information exchange initiatives (HIEs) in America
  • More than half the HIEs are not dependent on federal funding
  • Revenue source from transactions and subscriptions fees to data users and providers, which points towards sustainability of HIEs in  the long run rather than depending federal funding.  The model is similar to Canadian Diagnostic Imaging Repositories in some provinces, where the central organization (non-profit entity) has a sustainable revenue model continuing operations.
  • Data exchange between the various providers is on the rise from medications to lab results, inpatient discharge summaries, radiology results, inpatient diagnoses and procedures looks promising for the EHR.
  • Benefits and ROI of a HIE: Various measures of benefits and ROI are presented from reduced time spent to locate clinical results and records, decreased dollars on duplicate diagnostic procedures and decreased cost of care for chronic disease patients to name a few.
  • More Patient Engagement: There is no questions that patients want to get engaged and the survey underscores that point once again. HIEs are the avenue to break patient health information islands.

Thanks to the folks at eHealth Initiative for the survey,  I understand that this is a high level survey, a more detailed one will be very useful to shed light on the %of data exchanged between stakeholders for each type of data and the governance and architecture model followed for ensuring sustainability and scalability of the service.

Please click on this link to access the full survey and the associated webinar.

Saravana Rajan

Happy Canada Day! and eHealth good news from Canada

Happy Canada Day everyone !

News (good and bad) from Canadian Healthcare Technology World!

Good News First –

NEODIN (North Eastern Ontario Diagnostic Imaging Network) a diagnostic imaging(DI) repository that will connect all north eastern Ontario hospitals shown in the map below for sharing diagnostic images and results has connected one more major hospital, Thunder Bay to the DI network.

As stated in the Canada Health Infoway press release here, benefits of a DI-R are

  • Enables diagnostic images and reports to be shared between facilities, eliminating the need for patients to transport images and reports between doctors on CDs, films, or by fax.
  • It also allows specialists at one facility to access the reports for images acquired at other hospitals allowing for faster and more convenient information sharing between doctors. This improved access to patient information will help health care providers make more informed and timely medical decisions.
  • Helps reduce duplicate testing that results from lost, misplaced or otherwise unavailable images

One more step closer to EHR!

Congratulations to NEODIN!, Infoway and eHealth Ontario.

Bad News –

Province of Manitoba’s eHealth program is in the news for wrong reasons.

The eHealth program will be slow (another 20 years) and will cost more (another $450 million).

Here is the link to the article and a perspective from Michael Martineau, who has spent time analyzing the Canadian eHealth market with a market research firm.

Saravana Rajan

ehealth Consultant