Connecting WISHIN Participants Nationally
WISHIN is your on-ramp to Internetwork Exchange.
The eHealth Exchange is a network of providers, hospitals, HIEs (like WISHIN), federal agencies, etc., that share clinical information (care summaries/CCDAs) using a secure and standardized approach. There are hundreds of participating organizations spanning all 50 states that share information via the eHealth Exchange.
Becoming an eHealth Exchange participant takes some work and requires more than a few resources. It entails signing a legal agreement, completing testing to show compliance with technical standards, and paying an initial fee and ongoing annual fees.
The good news is that WISHIN Pulse participants can skip all the legal, technical, and financial requirements onboarding directly to the eHealth Exchange because WISHIN has already completed the work on behalf of all its participants.
Participation in the eHealth Exchange is important for the purposes of Promoting Interoperability (PI) compliance and attestation. Under certain PI measures, care summaries/CCDAs must be electronically shared via Direct Messaging (e.g., WISHIN Direct+) or through an organization that is a participant in the eHealth Exchange (WISHIN Pulse) for care management and/or transitions of care purposes.
At a practical level, WISHIN’s participation in the eHealth Exchange provides some key benefits to WISHIN Pulse participants, including:
Automatically Query the eHealth Exchange
When users query WISHIN Pulse for clinical data (care summaries/CCDAs) from within a provider’s EHR, WISHIN Pulse is included as part of an eHealth Exchange query. A provider doesn’t have to know the specific organization they want to query, they just point it to WISHIN, and the rest is done automatically. WISHIN won’t query every eHealth Exchange participant individually, but it will query Wisconsin’s border states, other state HIEs, participants that commonly share patients with WISHIN participants, and participants in snowbird states like Florida and Arizona within the eHealth Exchange Hub. When a provider queries WISHIN from its EHR, they do not need to know which WISHIN participant OR which eHealth Exchange participant the patient received care from to receive care summaries/CCDAs. It’s important to note that the eHealth Exchange is a gateway for sharing care summaries/CCDAs only. While WISHIN Pulse can provide other types of clinical data (EKGs, radiology reports, lab results, etc.) the eHealth Exchange only supports the exchange of care summaries/CCDAs, which may not include the breadth and depth of data WISHIN Pulse can.
Veterans Administration (VA) Access
WISHIN’s eHealth Exchange participation allows WISHIN Pulse participants to exchange health information (care summaries/CCDAs) with the Veterans Administration. Many veterans see VA and non-VA health care providers, which can make it difficult for providers to access the records they need to manage a veteran’s care. The VLER (Virtual Lifetime Electronic Record) Health Exchange allows non-VA providers to securely view certain veteran health information through the eHealth Exchange. WISHIN participants that treat veterans, this functionality provides access to care summary/CCDA information from the VA and from non-VA providers.