New IDC Health Insights Report Reveals Best Practices for Establishing Sustainable Health Information Exchange

FRAMINGHAM, MA, April 2, 2012 – IDC Health Insights today announced the availability of a new report, Best Practices: Establishing Sustainable Health Information Exchange (Document # HI233879), to educate healthcare organizations on best practices for establishing enterprise or community health information exchanges (HIOs). While many HIOs have attempted to become sustainable, financially viable entities, only some have succeeded. The new report provides a framework for establishing a new HIO based on keen insight from successful early adopters.

Based on interviews with nearly 50 executives from enterprise, regional and statewide health information exchange organizations, the best practices described in the report are arranged by the major components of an HIE deployment: stakeholder engagement, communications, data governance, HIE solution selection, project management and implementation, EHR deployment, clinical utilization, privacy and security and funding and sustainability. As a first step, IDC Health Insights emphasizes that healthcare organizations should focus on understanding the clinical, business and technical requirements of the HIE before identifying potential solutions and conducting a vendor search.

Additional key findings include:

As healthcare organizations evolve toward accountable care, they will need to deploy HIE capabilities to facilitate patient-centric care collaboration.

Interoperability is a transformation project. HIOs need to work closely with stakeholders and communicate well to obtain their trust, which will be essential for a successful outcome.

HIOs should anticipate that resolving privacy and security issues take longer than resolving technology issues. As such, organizations should not delay the planning and implementation process if they want to maximize meaningful EHR-use incentives.

"Too many HIOs have relied on the "build and they will come" strategy. Instead, HIOs must plan for sustainability from the very beginning," asserts Lynne A. Dunbrack, program director, IDC Health Insights. "If the HIO will not be sustainable after the initial funding, then careful consideration should be given to whether to launch the HIO in the first place."

For additional information about IDC Health Insights, or to arrange a one-on-one briefing with Lynne Dunbrack, please contact Sarah Murray at 781-378-2674 or Reports are available to qualified members of the media. For information on purchasing reports, contact; reporters should email

About IDC Health Insights

IDC Health Insights assists health businesses and IT leaders, as well as the suppliers who serve them, in making more effective technology decisions by providing accurate, timely, and insightful fact-based research and consulting services. Staffed by senior analysts with decades of industry experience, our global research analyzes and advises on business and technology issues facing the payer, provider and life sciences industries. International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology market. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world’s leading technology, media, research, and events company. For more information, please visit, email, or call 508-935-4445. Visit the IDC Health Insights Community at