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The eHealth Exchange is a rapidly growing network in the U.S. comprised of partners who can share health information over the internet. Developed under the supervision of the U.S. Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, the platform makes use of a standardized approach for exchange participants. This, apart from secure sharing of clinical information, also helps in eliminating one-off legal agreements and other modifications. The eHealth Exchange currently spans all 50 states, 4 federal agencies, approximately 50 percent of U.S. hospitals, approximately 26,000 medical groups, 100 million patients and 8,300 pharmacies.
The eHealth Exchange was formerly known as the Nationwide Health Information Network.
The eHealth Exchange is web-services-based series of standards, designed specifically for secure exchange of clinical information. The Sequoia Project, a nonprofit industry coalition, currently manages the platform. The participating organizations agree and support a common set of standards and specifications, which helps in establishing a secure and trusted connection among the participants. With the help of the eHealth Exchange, participating organizations can transmit clinical information to other participating organizations, can search and request for healthcare information from other participating organizations as permitted by law, can match patients to their information without requiring a national patient identifier and can also subscribe to receive updates and technical expertise related to clinical information.
There are many benefits associated with the eHealth Exchange. First of all, it helps in cutting down the expenses related to legal agreements, governance and custom interfaces for the participants. It helps with better clinical and business decision making. It also provides better security for patient-related data, process improvements and fair payments. The eHealth Exchange provides a multi-purpose platform capable of incorporating new use cases and standards.