Data standard to have ‘a systemic impact on the entire health care ecosystem’: Oracle

By Melissa Fassbender contact

- Last updated on GMT

(Image: Getty/Olivier Le Moal)
(Image: Getty/Olivier Le Moal)

Related tags: Oracle, Data

Last week, leaders from Amazon, Google, IBM, Microsoft, Oracle, and Salesforce reaffirmed a previously made commitment to interoperability among health information technology.

The cloud provider companies released a statement during the CMS Blue Button 2.0 Develop Conference addressing the well-documented challenges surrounding incomplete, unavailable, or missing patient data.

“[W]ithout a robust network of clinical information, even the best people and technology may not reach their potential,”​ the statement reads.

Tasked with advancing connectivity and interoperability, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) has laid out a 10-year plan​, including the publication of a proposed rule​, which focuses on the use of HL7 FHIR​ (Fast Health care Interoperability Resources).

HL7 FHIR​ is an open standard for electronically exchanging health care information – and could have “a systemic impact on the entire health care ecosystem, including clinical trial research and development,”​ said Rebecca LaBorde, senior principal field scientist and lead health care strategist, Oracle Health Sciences.

“Ensuring seamless exchange of data, including full health care records, can greatly impact a patient’s care or the results of an entire trial,” ​she told us. “Increased data transparency enabled by artificial intelligence and machine learning can help mitigate risks, uncover benefits of various treatments, and provide a more comprehensive care plan that is focused solely on the patient.”

As part of the statement, the companies announced their commitment to introducing tools for the health care developer community.

“After the proposed rule takes effect, we commit to offering technical guidance based on our work including solution architecture diagrams, system narratives, and reference implementations to accelerate deployments for all industry stakeholders,” ​the documents reads, adding, “We will work diligently to ensure these blueprints provide a clear and robust path to achieving the spirit of an API-first strategy for health care interoperability.”

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) late last year released a guidance​ encouraging the use of electronic health records (EHRs), though interoperability challenges have remained a prominent challenge.

The guidance encouraged sponsors and health care organizations to work with EHR and electronic data capture (EDC) system vendors to further the interoperability and integration of EHR and EDC systems.

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