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Laboratory Data Interoperability: The Pandemic-Driven Imperative

by Carolyn Woods | December 8, 2021 | Blog, What’s New

As we wrap up 2021, two years after the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s important to recognize the seismic shift in American healthcare delivery norms that the pandemic caused. Huge numbers of people abandoned traditional healthcare models in favor of online appointment scheduling, pop-up testing sites, drive-through vaccinations, and telehealth visits, thereby becoming more comfortable seeking care outside of traditional healthcare settings.

When they next need care, many Americans will again choose alternative, non-hospital settings, making it more commonplace—and possibly necessary—for them to take their personal health data with them. Because these trends are likely to continue, we can expect more people to take over as the curators of their own health data, leveraging technology to transform their fragmented health records into personal health plans. But for them to be successful at being the keepers of their own information, the U.S. healthcare system must first surrender the data; laboratory test results will arguably be the most important of them.

A recent CAP Today article summarized the long-known impediments to laboratory data interoperability and the upcoming steps FDA’s federal SHIELD (Systemic Harmonization and Interoperability Enhancement for Laboratory Data) initiative is expected to take. As the American healthcare industry grapples with who will take which steps first, Sunquest is ready to support the efforts. We see this time as an opportunity for our industry to improve people’s lives by finally agreeing upon how to make laboratory data universally accessible—retrievable, sharable, portable and storable.

We at Sunquest have decades of experience with data interoperability between our products and other systems, namely enterprise EHR/EMR systems and equipment, not only in the lab but also from bedside to blood bank and all over the hospital. Sunquest is prepared to partner unilaterally with healthcare industry stakeholders to move the entire industry forward for healthcare data interoperability and portability that accommodates innovative and effective care delivery methods for the twenty-first century.

Wherever the plans and action are progressing toward this end, Sunquest is ready to participate. Send your invitations to Audrey Carlson, Principal Software Engineer, Interoperability via communications@sunquestinfo.com.

About the author
Carolyn Woods Marketing Content Writer
Carolyn Woods
Marketing Content Writer

Carolyn has spent most of her career in B2B software marketing. Her background in healthcare marketing comes from many years working for a national blood provider. She is an advocate for healthcare cost transparency to U.S. consumers and is fascinated by applications for big data, artificial intelligence and personalized medicine.

About the author
Carolyn Woods Marketing Content Writer
Carolyn Woods
Marketing Content Writer

Carolyn has spent most of her career in B2B software marketing. Her background in healthcare marketing comes from many years working for a national blood provider. She is an advocate for healthcare cost transparency to U.S. consumers and is fascinated by applications for big data, artificial intelligence and personalized medicine.

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Posted on by Jay Griggs