As community information exchange efforts ramp up across the country to share information between health systems and community-based organizations, state governments are starting to explore their roles in governance and coordination. For instance, the Oregon Health Authority has just launched a Community Information Exchange (CIE) Workgroup tasked with providing recommendations on strategies to accelerate, support, and improve CIE across the state.
In creating the 15-member workgroup, OHA noted that “siloed systems of care and difficulty accessing information and resources are barriers that contribute to poor health outcomes and exacerbate health inequities. Today, CIE efforts are developing across Oregon to address these issues. Given the rapid development there is considerable risk of confusion, duplication, inefficiencies, and reinforcement of systemic inequities. The state Health Information Technology Oversight Council (HITOC) has not yet set strategic direction related to CIE and opportunities may arise quickly for statewide coordination.”
The workgroup will bring together community-based organizations, healthcare, and governmental entities working toward the goal of eliminating health inequities. OHA noted that CIE allows for common language, a shared resource database, closed-loop referrals, and an integrated technology platform to deliver community care planning. CIE also maximizes a person-centered approach to support and minimize potential trauma by ensuring sensitive information is collected only as needed and is stored safely.
OHA envisions the workgroup’s efforts to include:
• Identify a shared strategic vision and common goals, leading with health equity;
• Identify if legislative or policy changes are needed to support the CIE goals, and in turn how learnings from CIE can support policy changes. If the workgroup has legislative recommendations, it will aim to finalize those by September 2022.
• Center community voices in all aspects related to CIE, including priorities and governance;
• Identify how to overcome barriers to participation in CIE, particularly for CBOs serving culturally and linguistically specific populations;
• Determine if statewide governance is needed and explore statewide strategies;
• Apply data equity principles to CIE related to access, analysis, and interpretation of aggregated data;
• Determine in what ways state agencies may play a role in CIE, including funding;
The workgroup’s recommendations will inform the HITOC’s Health IT Strategic Plan for Oregon and OHA efforts.
Healthcare Innovation also recently interviewed stakeholders in Colorado about how they are working together to envision a social health information exchange (S-HIE) infrastructure that would weave together the CIE partnerships already created and the technology platforms they use.