Legal Considerations in Joining an HIE

Chris Dimick | Journal of AHIMA | September 1, 2011

The legal issues healthcare organizations must consider when joining a health information exchange (HIE) go far beyond the standard HIPAA-related concerns.

HIEs are rapidly gaining prominence in healthcare, bolstered by federal initiatives like the meaningful use program, which requires participants engage in HIE activities. The prospect of improved healthcare delivery through improved access to health information is also driving organizations to sign up with HIEs.

Legal issues should be addressed from the start of any partnership between an HIE and a healthcare organization, according to Claudia Egan, JD, and John Orth, CHIA+, Egan is an attorney with von Briessen & Roper based in Milwaukee, WI, and Orth is principle consultant for EHRs at IMERGE Consulting. They discussed the legal and compliance issues that affect interoperable electronic record exchange during a presentation at AHIMA's Legal EHR Summit in August in Chicago. They Have firsthand HIE experience—both volunteers with Wisconsin's state HIE, the WISHIN...