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Who Owns the Data???

The battle for interoperability and easy data transfer is just beginning. The author of Electronic Health Record vendors Take Patient Data Hostage: What Should We Do? suggests that the electronic records incentive program aka meaningful use has bee fairly successful in getting providers to adopt an EHR system. However, the interoperability and goal of instant data sharing has not gained much traction.

The majority of EHR product vendors are unwilling to work with competitors through HL7 interfaces to solve this problem. They charge exorbitant rates for data transfer and HL7 interfaces.

This leaves the provider with the question, "Who owns the data?". A cynical view would say that in hierarchical order is the NSA, CMS, Google/Apple, Vendors and lastly the provider and/or patient. In the article, several solutions are offered such as doing nothing- allow market forces to fix the problem, forcing cooperation through more legislative or administrative mandates, or continue to pay through the meaningful use program for interoperability.

When a provider wants to switch EHR vendors, the issue of data transfer comes up last. The cost of this process inhibits the practices' desire to try something new and possibly an improvement. It greatly discourages boutique products that are specifically designed for specific lines of business since the price to interface with balky enterprise systems is cost prohibitive for a small practice.

All of Xpress Technologies’ software lines are HL7 compatible. We encourage integration with any software system the practice wishes to use. Xpress Technologies will assist the client with data transfer of basic patient demographics at minimal cost to the practice. Xpress Technologies product lines are user-friendly, has a migration support team, and is simple to establish even during a transition period.

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