Healthcare IT is often about herding cats. The cats are the many vendors the IT team must deal with on a daily (and often nightly) basis. Health IT departments are a conglomeration of many different vendors that require the IT team to spend a lot of time on the phone, trying to get the vendors to “play well” together. This, in essence, is interoperability.
With an interoperability platform in place, the IT team can corral the vendor “herd” through a central location, which will introduce a coordinated, even empowering, approach to managing the data infrastructure.
Over the past decade or so, most hospitals, labs, and imaging centers have introduced an integration engine into their infrastructure, in one form or another. An engine like Corepoint Integration Engine  offers users a modern, platform approach with higher levels of performance and control.
I’m often asked, “Isn’t an engine just another point of failure ?”
If I’ve got system A and system B, and I introduce a third node (the engine) into the middle, I have another opportunity for failure between those two systems. In actuality, having that central hub helps tremendously because you’ve got just one place to monitor and one place to troubleshoot. You can see both sides of every interface in one centralized location.
Here’s a scenario involving an Electronic Health Record (EHR), as defined in Defining Key Health Information Technology Terms (The National Alliance for Health Information Technology, April 28, 2008): An electronic record of health-related information on an individual that conform... to lab interface that illustrates the importance of a platform approach:
Dr. Payne calls me up and says, “Hey, where’s my lab result?” In a non-platform environment, I’ve got two places to look for the lab result. I have to look in the EHR and I have to look in the lab system.
If I had an integration platform in the middle, I have one application to log into and I can see both sides of the conversation. I can even perform a search in the Corepoint Log Files for Dr. Payne’s lab result and have it immediately processed. Within minutes, I could return Dr. Payne’s call and let him know that the lab result is now waiting for him in his EHR.
All healthcare applications are specialized. EHRs are not specialized in interoperability. It’s simply not what they are designed for. EHRs have a database and a bunch of screens so clinicians can record and retrieve information. EHRs keep track of patients, demographics, diagnoses, billing, beds, etc.
The Corepoint Integration Engine  platform specializes in interoperability, which includes monitoring and alerting on interfaces and other features all developed with health data interchange in mind.
If you’re fully dedicated to having an interoperable infrastructure, you’re going to have a better experience with an integration platform from Corepoint Health that focuses on and specializes in interoperability. You’re going to get more control and many features to help dramatically improve workflows.