TEFCA IS BACK. No, this is not a Poltergeist flashback. In fact, TEFCA, the Trusted Exchange Framework and Common Agreement, is not supposed to be horror-inducing at all — it is another “can’t we just make interoperability happen already” project. ONC leader Micky Tripathi is dusting off TEFCA from its hiatus (since 2019), saying on numerous occasions that he wants to renew and accelerate TEFCA, in an effort to enable nationwide exchange of electronic health information across unaffiliated health information networks. So what does this mean? It means that TEFCA is trying to make sure that when doctors or other entities need to get health information (e.g., for treatment, payment, public health, or population health reasons) they can get access no matter what computer system they use or regardless of how they currently get that information now. TEFCA is an agreement (the Sequoia Project is helping to create it) among participants to adhere to rules and standards so they can get access to and exchange health information from various sources. ONC is trying to figure out how to integrate local, state and regional health information exchanges into a nationwide network so, according to Tripathi, “a user doesn’t have to think about what network they’re on.” Soon, we are going to be hearing more about “health information organizations” and whether they are ready to participate in TEFCA. Are you ready? Or should we see if Steven Spielberg can create a new horror film called TEFCA?
May 7, 2021 | 2 min read
May 7, 2021
Only What Matters in Health Information Policy
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