Managing Electronic Patient Health Information in a Nationwide Health Information Network

Contributed by John Branner
A lack of access to medical records can cause delays and put patient health at risk. Since 2004, the U.S. government has been working toward developing a nationwide health information network (NHIN or NwHIN) to bridge the health care information gap between geographic locations and create a “network within networks.” However, problems associated with the development of the NHIN have been noted early in the development process. Patient information security, accessibility, interoperability, and data standardization have been at the forefront of concern. This paper addresses those concerns and provides a framework for managing a nationwide patient information network.
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