The term health information exchange can be used to:
- Describe the act of secure, confidential collection and sharing of electronic health information between authorized health care organizations, or
- Refer to an organization that provides the technology, security, and policies necessary to aggregate and enable the secure sharing of electronic health information.
The Vermont Health Information Exchange aggregates clinical information from the electronic health records (EHRs) of clinicians across the state and makes it available for appropriate purposes. Uses of the data include delivering test results, making more complete patient data available at the point of care, informing the coordination of patient care across clinicians, supporting quality improvement efforts, and providing reporting for public health efforts.
This aggregation eliminates the need for health care organizations to develop separate interfaces with each of their partners as the Vermont Health Information Exchange can be used to efficiently deliver information on their behalf.
In addition to aggregating data, the Vermont Health Information Exchange enriches the data it receives, matching unique records to create a more complete patient record for each person, de-duplicating records, and translating terms into standardized code sets to make them meaningful across organizations.