Fewer than four in 10 technology executives at U.S. hospitals say they are successfully sharing data with other health systems, and nearly a third admit that their data-sharing efforts are insufficient, even within their own organizations. Only 69 percent of technology executives said they are effective at sharing data within their own organizations.
These were among the findings from a survey of IT and business professionals at health systems — “Improving Health Care Interoperability: Are We Making Progress?" — conducted by the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) and sponsored by the Center for Connected Medicine (CCM).
“This survey supports other research we have conducted at HIMSS, which shows that healthcare is making strides advancing interoperability. However, this research also suggests providers feel most successful at sharing data within their own health systems, and less often report success sharing medical data with payers, patients, or other health systems and partners,” said Janet King, senior director of market insights at HIMSS Media.
Unfortunately, interoperability challenges can stand in the way of pursuing key strategic goals, including tapping into unstructured data and reducing the cost of care. In fact, only about a quarter of respondents said their organizations’ work to improve interoperability had allowed them to reduce the cost of care.
The most crucial elements needed to drive interoperability in healthcare, according to survey respondents, are commitment by senior leadership, financial incentives or penalties that encourage organizations to share data with one another and with individual patients, and advances in tools and technologies.