Everyone in the healthcare industry today is talking about FHIR. But FHIR is not just a buzzword — it’s a game changer for both healthcare providers and patients worldwide.
FHIR stands for Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources. It defines a common standard for healthcare providers to use in creating and exchanging health records. The common standard means that individual healthcare platforms, applications, providers, and systems can all communicate with each other and exchange information quickly and efficiently. Instead of the old reality of multiple local solutions each speaking their own language, FHIR provides a standard international language and makes possible a new era of universal communication.
The benefits of FHIR extend not only to patients and healthcare providers, but also to medical device companies who wish to connect with healthcare organizations and providers worldwide.
For patients, FHIR means that their health records are always available and discoverable, even when they move between systems and providers. Patients can access their own records from home using website, mobile, and even wearable applications. They can expect all their healthcare providers to issue records in the same format, making it easier for them to take charge of their own data.
For providers such as medical care teams, the real benefit is that all the patient’s data and records are accessible immediately with no need to enter data manually, which can introduce errors. FHIR also makes information exchange with health insurance companies efficient and straightforward.
Beyond these benefits, today we are going to focus on the real added value that FHIR brings to medical device and digital healthcare companies.
A standardized database schema is critical for any medical device company hoping to connect its data to any healthcare organization or provider. That standardization enables interoperability and effective communication. Any medical device company operating today is expected to adhere to the industry-standard schema that FHIR defines.
Another benefit of FHIR standards is avoiding data duplication. Interoperability allows medical device companies to interact with databases maintained by healthcare organizations. The ability to access, for example, a healthcare organization’s patient demographics information means that device companies do not need to maintain their own internal databases for that data. This increases efficiency, reduces the risk of introducing errors, and eliminates data conflicts: devices companies can always be on the same page as the healthcare companies they interact with, because they are working with the same data.
Moreover, the GDPR and the cybersecurity requirements of the FDA and CE are absolutely critical for medical device companies. In reducing their own need for database maintenance, companies can limit their exposure to cyber threats and risks.
As a result, FHIR provides real value for medical device companies that want to work with healthcare organizations and providers worldwide.
Matrix Medika specializes in connectivity and interoperability and has a proven track record of helping US healthcare organizations and medical device companies to implement FHIR standards
Medika has also been a pioneer in implementing FHIR standards at some of Israel’s foremost healthcare organizations, with more and more Israeli companies turning to Medix to keep pace with the international drive for connectivity.