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6 leading EMR companies form alliance for compatibility, record exchange

March 6, 2013
by Pamela Tabar, Senior Editor
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Six electronic medical record (EMR) service companies—several of them marketshare rivals—have joined efforts to create the CommonWell Health Alliance, an independent, not-for-profit organization focusing on interoperability standards for electronic health data exchange.

Cerner, McKesson Corp., athenahealth, Allscripts Healthcare Solutions and Greenway Medical Technologies and RelayHealth (owned by McKesson) comprise the founding companies of the endeavor.

Among other things, the alliance members will “certify core interoperability services and standards to health information technology (HIT) vendors to embed within their own software to solve many of the challenges associated with interoperability,” explains the alliance’s fact sheet.

The alliance will also provide record locator services—RelayHealth’s role in the group—to exchange EMR data across multiple providers and care sites.

The companies jointly announced the news of the alliance Monday at the Health Information Management Systems Society (better known as HIMSS) 2013 conference, the largest annual U.S. conference dedicated to healthcare information technology.