In a December 2012 webinar, we asked 70 attendees whether they had heard of the Direct Project. 55% stated that they had not. My prediction is that both Direct and IHE-based Web Services will see significant adoption in 2013, to the point where more the 90% of our customers will be evaluating one of these options for external connectivity.

This projection is based on Meaningful Use requirements and ACO proliferation. Meaningful Use Stage 2 requires the secure transport of patient summaries between facilities, while the lifeline of an ACO is the efficient sharing of health information among the members. The Direct Project allows for a simple transport method to push health information to another facility, while IHE-based Web Service allows facilities to query one another for health information. Both of these will have a significant impact on how patient health information is shared in the future.

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