U.S.-based health alliance to develop a common set of open standards and a digital platform for secure exchange of health information, building on existing efforts from ToIP and W3C
Registering patients at check-in, from insurance and identity checks, to patient matching and coverage records, remains manual, error-prone, and time consuming – largely because our mode of interacting with patient information has not yet caught up with today’s digital-centric world.
A movement is underway to change all of that. Today, a coalition across several industries unveiled the first step in the evolution of trusted and secure healthcare information exchange. This begins with a governance framework to ensure the ability to use common rules, regardless of the healthcare provider, payer or technology partner.
Under the Lumedic Exchange (the Exchange), Lumedic, Mastercard, Providence and Cambia Health Solutions have come together to advance a common set of digital identity principles that will be used to enable individuals to share their personal health information in a secure, verifiable and trusted way—when and how they want. The result will be a much more robust and user-friendly healthcare experience, by enabling patients to actively direct how their information is used, from registration to receiving test results.
“Cambia values standards-based collaborations that work to improve information exchange and patient outcomes,” said Cambia Chief Technology Officer Kirk Anderson. “We are very excited to join the innovative members of the Lumedic Exchange to explore new approaches for securely managing consumer identities across the healthcare ecosystem.”
“We’re living in a digital-first world, and patients today expect the same seamless, real-time experiences in their healthcare interactions that they have everywhere else,” said Mike Nash, Lumedic CEO. “Right now, patient data lives with any number of organizations, making it difficult for patients to have control of their own information. The Exchange is the first healthcare ecosystem focused specifically on using verifiable credentials to exchange information through patient-led transactions.”
Creating a Common Framework
The Exchange builds on existing cross-industry collaboration on digital identity, such as the recent launch of the Trust Over IP (ToIP) Foundation and the World Wide Web Consortium’s (W3C) specifications for decentralized credential management.
The Exchange will feature a patient-centric model that removes the need for a centralized vault of sensitive personal information. Instead, it shifts the ownership and control to the patient, who may grant permission for others to access sensitive, care-related information when it’s needed for specific uses.
Once finalized, the standards will be activated in a new digital platform designed to allow individuals to use any of their devices with a mobile wallet to obtain, store and share their own healthcare data—information including vaccination records, previous medical history, insurance information and test results.
The standards and digital platform will create a simple, expedient and more transparent and private experience for patients. They will also reduce time and cost for both patients and healthcare organizations.
Providence, one of the nation’s largest health systems and a founding member of the Exchange, is already testing the use of this platform to streamline the delivery of COVID-19 test results and make it easier to securely and anonymously, satisfy health checks.
“The manual data exchange processes still prevalent in our day-to-day health care operations create administrative burden, increase costs, delay care, and ultimately contribute to caregiver burnout and patient dissatisfaction,” said Eve Cunningham, chief medical officer, Providence Medical Group SWWA. “Our vision for the Lumedic Exchange is to simplify and streamline that process. As a healthcare provider, I can’t emphasize enough how important this work is to securing our future and ensuring we are providing the highest quality care for our patients.”
The Exchange invites both companies and not-for-profit organizations to join its efforts. Current members bring expertise across a wide array of areas, ranging from patient advocacy to artificial intelligence, machine learning to blockchain, big data and more.
In conjunction with last month’s HLTH VRTL conference, the Exchange published two white papers, which explore governance models for digital trust and the intersection of digital identity and healthcare laws, respectively. For more information as well as additional details about the open standards effort, visit: https://www.lumedic.io/lumedic-exchange.