EHR Interoperability | Emergency Department Alerts & CMS Compliance

Add Emergency Department (ED) Alerts and Notifications to Comply with CMS Rule

Without EHR interoperability, there are limitations to what healthcare organizations can share and access. In behavioral health and human services, interoperable electronic health record systems (EHRs) are essential to guarantee health information exchange (HIE) and prevent information blocking. Interoperability is the ability of different devices and systems to communicate. It’s possible when different parties can exchange information using common protocols, standards, or formats. These conventions allow for machine-to-machine (M2M) communication without human intervention.

If healthcare providers share patient data in a standardized format, it allows other EHR systems to read and interpret the data and facilitates further analysis to provide more personalized treatment recommendations. EHR interoperability plays an important role in digital medicine research because it can help you better understand how it gets implemented into clinical workflows and how it ultimately impacts patient care. Improvement in patient care outcomes and reduced cost of care are among the top benefits of interoperability. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recognizes the necessity of EHR interoperability in achieving meaningful use and supporting quality health care outcomes.

As the use of EHRs becomes more widespread, the need for EHR interoperability has emerged as a crucial factor in the efficient and effective delivery of care. But what exactly is EHR interoperability, and why is it so important?

At its core, EHR interoperability refers to the ability of different EHR systems and other software to communicate, integrate, and exchange shared data with one another. It’s about creating a seamless flow of client information across various care settings, enabling providers to access and share vital client data regardless of the technology they use. Interoperable EHR systems allow for:

  • Enhanced Patient Care: With interoperable EHRs, providers have immediate access to a patient’s complete health history. This comprehensive view aids in accurate diagnoses, reduces errors, and enables more effective treatment plans.
  • Improved Efficiency: Interoperability eliminates duplicate data entry and reduces redundancy in testing, saving time and resources for both providers and clients. It also streamlines administrative tasks, allowing for quicker and more accurate billing and documentation.
  • Better Data Analysis: When EHR systems can communicate across different platforms, it facilitates the aggregation and analysis of large datasets. This data can be used to identify trends, improve public health monitoring, and client outcomes.
  • Enhanced Patient Engagement: Interoperable EHRs empower patients by giving them easier access to their health records. This fosters greater patient involvement in their care decisions and can lead to improved outcomes.
    Facilitating Continuity of Care: In cases of emergency or when a patient changes healthcare providers, interoperable EHRs ensure that critical information is readily available, facilitating continuity of care.

EHR interoperability allows for a more integrated, efficient, and patient-centered care system. With ongoing technological advancements and regulatory initiatives aimed at promoting data sharing, the future of EHR interoperability is promising.

What is the CMS Interoperability and Patient Access Rule (CMS-9115-F)?

Historically, patients have not had emergency department and hospital visit information sent to their other physicians and clinicians. Under the CMS Interoperability and Patient Access Rule (CMS-9115-F), hospitals are now required to notify an individual’s care team about significant events like hospital admissions, discharges, transfers, and emergency department (ED) visits thus allowing states to streamline accessibility to the data for providers. This change aims to bridge the previous communication gap, where such vital information often remained isolated within individual healthcare facilities.

Automating Emergency Department Alerts and Notifications in Your Qualifacts EHR for Whole Person Care

Qualifacts has developed an innovative solution to seamlessly integrate ED alert information. The Emergency Department (ED) Alerts and Notifications integration allows customers to automate the receipt of alert information from healthcare partners and display the details for clinicians, empowering them with timely and critical patient information The care team can then begin planning for follow-up care before discharge or ensure the client is receiving the necessary follow-up care after an ED visit or hospital discharge. The information can be shown within the following areas:

  • Staff Alerts Module
  • BI Reporting
  • Alerts and Notifications
  • Alerts and Notifications Custom Reporting
  • Client ED Notification Service Document
  • Client Face Sheet/Schedule

What are the Benefits of Automated Emergency Department Alerts and Notifications?

Emergency Department (ED) Alerts and Notifications foster proactive care planning. Clinicians can now efficiently coordinate follow-up care in response to hospital and ED encounters, ensuring that patients receive continuous and comprehensive care. Adding ED Alerts and Notifications allows behavioral health organizations to:

Easily schedule a follow-up appointment within the appropriate timeframe which can help improve outcomes
Monitor ongoing ED visits or hospital stays to assess other underlying concerns, helping prevent readmissions
Consider and evaluate clinical effectiveness of treatment
Improve customer metrics for HEDIS, CCBHC, and NCQA quality measures through intuitive workflows
Know who has been admitted to a psychiatric hospital, helping care coordinators plan for discharge, which is now required prior to discharge by many states
Effectively demonstrate care coordination when negotiating payer contracts for value-based care with data collected
And more!


Ready To Learn More about ED Alerts and Notifications?

If you are a Qualifacts Credible or CareLogic customer, or even a prospective customer, and you’d like to learn more about this offering, we’re here to help!

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At Qualifacts, we are committed to serving behavioral health, rehabilitative (PT/OT/SLP), and human services organizations by providing top-rated EHR solutions and services. Our team consists of seasoned professionals with hands-on clinical and administrative experience in these vital service areas. We understand the unique challenges you face and are here to assist you in selecting the most suitable solutions for your organization’s needs. Let’s kickstart the conversation that can transform your services. Complete this brief form to get started.