Enhanced interoperability is key to containing COVID-19, according to a report from the Duke-Margolis Center for Health Policy, which has a list of recommendations for providers, clinical laboratories, and healthcare IT developers to improve patient data exchange and compatibility of disparate hospital systems.
According to the assembled group of health IT professionals and stakeholders, there is an opportunity to use existing data systems to improve the flow of critical information needed to keep the public safe.
“We have never had to work together with the scale or urgency required for COVID-19 containment,” the report says. “In particular, public health agencies are facing difficulties routinely accessing critical data from these other key participants in the containment effort, despite valiant attempts to cobble together information from many disparate systems.”
Along with interoperability, containment also hinges on learning valuable information about testing, contact tracing, and detecting outbreaks. Improving these factors is crucial as the country begins to open incrementally, as is the effective collaboration of public health authorities with healthcare providers, laboratories, and community-based organizations.
The Duke-Margolis resource on COVID-19 can be found here.