Ontario Health Teams (OHT), a path-breaking initiative taken by the Ontario government to end hallway health care is slowly taking shape. This new healthcare system will focus on delivering connected care centered around patients and their families. Through OHT, doctors, hospitals, community and home care providers will be able to collaborate and deliver integrated care no matter where they are located. As a result, the idea of a connected team helping patients traverse the healthcare system is paving way for modern healthcare innovation.
The Ministry of Health started the process of shortlisting applicants with an open call for self-assessment for Ontario Health Teams. Consequently, based on the self-assessment forms, the teams were classified on their level of readiness. In total, 31 teams were deemed to be well-positioned for completing the full application. Here’s the list of the 31 teams invited for full-application for Ontario Health Teams.
Ontario Health Teams – Locations
Ontario Health Teams – Full Application List
||Team Name (Provisional)
||Muskoka and Area OHT
||Connected Care Halton OHT
||Hills of Headwater
|Toronto – North West
||North Toronto OHT
||West York OHT
||North York Central Health System OHT
||Southlake Community OHT
||Eastern York Region and North Durham OHT
||Great Barrie Area OHT
||Guelph and Area OHT
||Brampton, Bramalea, North Etobicoke, Malton and West Woodbridge OHT
||Ottawa Health Team/Équipe Santé Ottawa
|Ottawa – East
||ÉSO Ottawa-Est/Ottawa East OHT
||All Nations Health Partners OHT(Kenora)
||Near North Health and Wellness OHT
|Sault Ste. Marie
||Équipe Santé Sudbury and Districts OHT
|Toronto – North East
||North Toronto OHT
||East Toronto Health Partners
||Huron Perth and Area OHT
||Chatham Kent OHT
Apart from 31 full applications, 41 other applications were deemed in-development after readiness assessment. The number of Ontario health teams is expected to increase with time, and therefore the vision of a web of connected healthcare teams oriented towards patient-centered care is bound to help end hallway care in Ontario.
Keeping this goal in mind, Corolar FHIR Server for Microsoft Teams is helping ease the transition for healthcare teams to a more integrated approach to care by extending patient data from EHRs to Teams. Corolar FHIR Server, therefore, enables care-coordination, clinical consults, secure messaging, telehealth and much more for Ontario Health Teams. To learn more about our solutions for Ontario Health Teams click here or book a meeting with our healthcare specialist here.
Application programming interfaces (APIs) today are transforming business processes by enabling one software program to access the data or services of another. They are particularly useful for the healthcare industry, with its closed health IT systems and siloed data stores. The ability of APIs to manage the flow of information between disparate systems is helpful in supporting healthcare data interoperability between internal apps, EHRs and other data exchange tools.
The healthcare industry today is moving to digitize its records and making them discoverable and understandable. It is also structuring them and trying to standardize them in such a way as to support automated clinical decisions and enable machine-based processing of records. In doing so, it’s important to ensure that the API connections are secure and that any vulnerabilities which open the door for unauthorized access to the data do not leak information. We list 7 such privacy and security considerations with healthcare APIs, and how they can be mitigated to succeed and get accepted.
Privacy and Security Concerns with Healthcare APIs
- With APIs, users may gain access to a lot of data as compared to limited access offered by an email interface or a web site. Even if the data is not misused for malicious purposes, the unauthorized access provided to the data can violate the privacy regulations laid down by HIPAA.
- Though managed APIs are secure, there’s a risk of privacy violation when patients access PHI without being familiar with the HIPAA Notice of Privacy Practices for Protected Health Information. Also, some patients may share their health data to third party apps and expose themselves to a possible breach of privacy. This risk can be mitigated by ensuring that the electronic access request interface provides individuals with an opportunity to approve the electronic transmission of health information in accordance with applicable legal requirements like the HIPAA right of access.
- Organizations need to establish privacy and security policies which are consistent with the PMI Privacy Principles or Security Principles to effectively address any privacy or security risks.
- A service provider’s infrastructure, security practices, and technical capabilities for hosting implementations of APIs and apps that store, and access health information will need evaluation. The API will need to be protected using Transport Layer Security (TLS) Version 1.27 or higher with strong cipher suites (such as the Advanced Encryption Standard [AES] or higher) to protect health information in transit via the API from the EHR to the third-party.
- Technical and administrative policies should ensure that the identities of both users and contributors are established and verified before granting credentials for access to or contribution of health information. Similar policies need to control the actions of anyone who wishes to issue credentials to third parties, permitting them to access their own health information.
- Establish risk-based authentication controls which correspond to the organization’s security risk assessment, and are commensurate with the type of data, level of sensitivity of the information, and user type. Technical authorization controls need to support individual privacy preferences, but limit API access, use, or disclosure based on need.
- Data integrity protection controls need to detect any unauthorized alterations made to health information which is accessible through the API. EHR patient portals which interact with the API need to be secured and protected against all known and exploitable vulnerabilities.
There is no doubt that with appropriate privacy and security safeguards in place, APIs can add value to individual-directed sharing of health information. As a matter of fact, properly managed APIs provide better security than any legacy or proprietary integration technology. By ensuring authentication, authorization, certification, encryption, and signatures, we secure and manage healthcare API exchanges better.
Dapasoft has been announced as the winner of the Microsoft Application Innovation In Healthcare at Impact Awards 2019. Microsoft Canada hosts the IMPACT Awards to celebrate innovation in technology recognizing the outstanding work its partners to deliver virtually seamless solutions to customers based on Microsoft technologies. Microsoft enjoys the largest partner ecosystem in the industry, with over 14,000 partners across Canada.
At the awards ceremony Kevin Peesker, President of Microsoft Canada, noted that the IMPACT Awards showcase the excellence and innovation within the partner community. Each of these partners play an integral role in unlocking new opportunities for Canadian companies, while Microsoft is committed to helping their partner ecosystem build profitable businesses and successfully take their solutions to market.
Microsoft Canada presented the award on July 14, 2019 at the Microsoft Inspire conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. All the winners were selected based on the outstanding work they provided to their customers and community.
Dapasoft is helping bring to life the vision to drive value-based care and help large providers move to predictive, personalized and preventive care. The most agile healthcare organizations are looking to bridge old and new technologies and Dapasoft is easing this transition with its innovative cloud solutions. Be it integration with existing IT architectures, or implementing solutions with built-in security features, we are proud to partner with Microsoft and provide a platform that supports hybrid environment with a fast route to the cloud.
Today, clinicians and administrators are surrounded by digital offerings designed to improve patient experience and clinic efficiency. While healthcare delivery has been disrupted by many eHealth and digital initiatives, it’s widely acknowledged that carefully-planned digital transformation can help make primary care more efficient and patient-focused. Here is how eHealth applications are making the right impact and pushing the needle in the primary care arena:
Online appointment booking
Optimizing a clinician’s schedule is a major priority at any primary care site. Online appointment bookings, therefore, offer patients the ease of booking their own time slots as per their own convenience. Patients can now search for their doctor’s availability on their devices which significantly reduces the inbound call volumes for clinic administrators. Apart from appointment bookings, most online solutions also provide automated appointment reminders along with cancellation and rescheduling functionalities. These solutions, therefore, help reduce patient no-shows, which leads to better handling of clinicians’ schedule.
Virtual care refers to the ability of the clinic staff to offer one-on-one interactions without the patient physically present at the clinic. Be it a prescription renewal or a lab test, virtual care is providing patients the freedom to skip their appointments by opting for real-time virtual care. This not only increases the productivity of the primary care clinic but also allows the physicians to spend more time on complex cases which require their urgent attention. Today, mobile video along with text and voice messaging is used by many eHealth solutions to deliver virtual care.
Access to personal health records
Many virtual care mobile applications now provide the patients access to their own health records. Since virtual and in-clinic patient experiences are integrated, there’s no mismatch between the continuity and transition of health care records. With the ever growing demands from regulatory bodies to make access to patients’ data seamless and easy, eHealth applications are playing an important role in opening access to health data and making the process more transparent.
Care collaboration through new tools
Collaboration applications are an important aspect of eHealth initiatives. Since most EHR solutions are too complex for most physicians, platforms such as Microsoft Teams are making life easier for them. One such solution is Dapasoft’s ‘Corolar FHIR Server for Teams’. This solution brings clinical EHR data, in HL7 format, into Teams in FHIR format for efficient care coordination. Thus, it enables clinicians at adopting provider facilities to leverage the incredible collaborative capability of Teams while easily accessing clinical data from EHR systems like MEDITECH, Epic, Cerner, etc. using FHIR APIs.
Health data interoperability has been one of the biggest talking points for the healthcare industry in 2019. As providers, vendors, and developers navigate the murky waters of incoherent data standards, the Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resource standards or FHIR standards have been helpful in enabling seamless, on-demand information exchange.
Recently, CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services) came up with a proposal outlining the future approach to information blocking, the use of FHIR, and the role of APIs in interoperability. While the healthcare industry had been using the FHIR standard on a voluntary basis for some time, the proposed guidelines by ONC (Office of the National Coordinator) have made FHIR the required standard for development. Going forward, the standardization of FHIR will be critical for health IT teams to meet the obligations as 2015 Edition Certified EHR Technology (CEHRT) vendors.
The FHIR standard helps build a set of resources which aim to define the information contents and structure for the core information set which is shared amongst disparate systems.
“FHIR resources can be used to build documents that represent a composition: a set of coherent information that is a statement of healthcare information, particularly including clinical observations and services,” HL7 says. “A document is an immutable set of resources with a fixed presentation that is authored and/or attested by humans, organizations and devices.”
A FHIR resource, therefore, can include metadata, text or different data elements to create clinical documents, accessible and usable by multiple disparate systems. With the release of FHIR R4, the developers will have the capability to offer normative content for the data standard, something that is critical to implement FHIR consistently and uniformly.
While the use of FHIR for CEHRT and the latest guidelines by ONC to establish FHIR as the standard of choice has really pushed the envelope for improving interoperability, a lot of healthcare providers still need handholding to venture into the complex world of health data standards.
Corolar CDR (Clinical Data Repository) through FHIR
Corolar CDR connects to any existing Integration Engine through a FHIR Server. It ingests both clinical and non clinical data into a data repository. Corolar CDR can easily run on premise as a Microsoft SQL instance or in the cloud as an instance of Azure SQL.
Corolar FHIR Server for Health Analytics
Corolar FHIR Server enables Healthcare Organizations to ingest clinical and non-clinical data from any existing Integration Engine, through a FHIR Server, into a CDR (Clinical Data Repository). Leveraging Microsoft Power BI, this data repository can be harnessed by Healthcare Organizations for Health Analytics (customized reporting and dashboards) and for Machine Learning, all of which results in better efficiency and outcomes for patients.
Corolar FHIR Server for Microsoft Teams
Corolar FHIR Server for Microsoft Teams is an HL7-FHIR compliant FHIR API integration solution. This Solution ingests clinical and non clinical data from any existing Integration Engine, through a FHIR Server. This solution brings clinical EHR data, in HL7 format, into Teams in FHIR format for efficient care coordination. Thus, our solution enables clinicians at adopting provider facilities to leverage the incredible collaborative capability of Teams while easily accessing clinical data from EHR systems like MEDITECH, Epic, Cerner, etc. using FHIR APIs. Our solution makes it easy for Health IT to support clinician requests for secure, private, and easy to use collaboration scenarios.
Dapasoft’s Expertise In FHIR in the Cloud
Today, the most agile healthcare organisations are looking to bridge old and new technologies and Dapasoft’s cloud solutions are easing this transition. As your organization’s FHIR projects grow you can now be assured full support for FHIR STU3 standards on Microsoft Azure using Corolar Cloud. We provide LogicApps components native to Azure to handle FHIR requests, FHIR responses, HL7 to FHIR transformations, and FHIR ACK for healthcare enterprises.