CHICAGO – (January 24, 2013) – The IHE North American (NA) Connectathon and Conference has been deemed the “Lollapalooza of the Health IT” world. Each year, 500 of the industry’s top engineers gather in Chicago for the largest interoperability testing event in the U.S. The Connectathon, which is the health IT industry’s only large-scale face-to-face testing event, will take place Jan. 28-Feb. 2, at the Hyatt Regency Chicago at 151 E. Wacker Drive.
The interoperability testing event boasts 100 vendors and 160 test systems, demonstrating powerful advancements in health IT. Vendor testing registration is closed, but attendees can still register for the IHE NA Connectathon Conference 2013 and obtain a sneak peak of the testing floor on Wednesday, Jan. 30.
Visit the HIMSS Blog to hear what participants have to say about the Connectathon and Conference.
The IHE NA Connectathon Conference, a one day educational event, on Jan.30, provides industry professionals with continuing education and networking opportunities. Educational sessions will focus on how technology and IHE are enabling the achievement and sustainability of meaningful use in health IT. View the full agenda and list of education sessions. Additionally, a backstage pass and access to the Connectathon testing floor for a private tour is available to attendees; the testing floor is otherwise closed to the public. Tours will include an insider’s view of the testing environment, infrastructure, tools, and new testing services.
This year, three new features have been added to the lineup, including testing of HL7’s Consolidated CDA, IHE USA’s new Pilot Certification program in partnership with ICSA Labs, plus the first mHealth Hack-A-Thon.
IHE is organized by clinical and operational domains with eight IHE International Domainsavailable for testing at the event. In each domain, users with clinical and operational experience identify integration and information sharing priorities and vendors of relevant information systems develop consensus, standards-based solutions to address them.
The HL7 Clinical Document Architecture (CDA) is a document markup standard that specifies the structure and semantics of “clinical documents” for the purpose of exchange. Now, for testing at the Connectathon, the HL7 Consolidated CDA (C-CDA) offers a combined library of CDA templates and common document types, from progress notes to discharge summaries and more. C- CDA is now stipulated in Standards and Certification Criteria of Meaningful Use Stage 2. This national recognition positions C-CDA, for widespread adoption within EHR systems, thus advancing interoperability leading to information exchange, with a specific focus on care coordination.
Introduced in 1999, the IHE Connectathon has continued as an annual event with continued growth in the level and scope of participation. A parallel event in Europe was established in 2001 and has followed a similar trajectory. The next IHE Europe Connectathon will be held April 15-19, in Istanbul, Turkey. Connectathons have also been held in Australia, China, Japan and Korea.
IHE Connectathons are professionally managed and independently monitored testing events. A technical project management team develops detailed test plans for each role being tested at the Connectathon and organizes the process to maximize interoperability testing between corresponding systems from different vendors. Independent monitors observe and record test results, which are published in the Connectathon results database.
“IHE USA and ICSA Labs share the goal of accelerating the adoption of usable, secure, and interoperable health information technology to further the goal of improving patient safety and delivering higher quality of care. To that end, these organizations have formed a collaborative partnership to advance the state of the industry through the IHE USA Certification Pilot Program,” says Joyce Sensmeier, RN-BC, MS, CPHIMS, FHIMSS, FAAN, Vice President, Informatics, HIMSS. “This new program will be held in conjunction with the Connectathon, whose primary purpose is to address specific health IT interoperability issues. By testing the interoperability of their health IT systems, participants are able to improve the acquisition, management and communication of vital health information, while supporting efficient provider workflows and protecting private health information.”
About IHE USA
IHE USA (www.iheusa.org) is a not-for-profit organization established in 2010 that operates as a deployment committee of IHE International®. The mission of IHE USA is to drive adoption of standards-based interoperability to improve patient care through innovation, standards profiling, testing, education and collaboration. IHE USA improves the efficiency and effectiveness of healthcare delivery by supporting the deployment of standards-based electronic health record systems, facilitating the exchange of health information among care providers, both within the enterprise and across care settings, and enabling local, regional and nationwide health information networks in the United States, all in a manner consistent with participation in the activities of IHE International, Inc.
About IHE International
(www.ihe.net) is the global hub of the IHE initiative, a multi-stakeholder effort started in 1997 to promote the effective use of electronic health records and health information technology (HIT) by driving the adoption of standards-based solutions for interoperability. IHE International brings together HIT experts and stakeholders in more than a dozen clinical and operational domains to develop implementation guides call IHE Profiles that define the use of standards to address specific HIT interoperability needs. It also oversees a process of testing that fosters the adoption of IHE Profiles in real-world HIT products and care settings. IHE interoperability solutions are implemented in hundreds of products and in care sites around the world.