Howard University Hospital

Process Automation & Systems Scaling

Objective

To automate the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) disclosure tracking process, while integrating the HTS system with the Health Level 7 (HL7) system for easier file and data transfer.

Howard University Hospital is one of the most comprehensive health care facilities in Washington D.C., and provides students with unique exposure to ground-breaking clinical and research work. As part of their mission to “provide exemplary education, service, and research that promotes patient centered collaborative care and advocate for the elimination of health disparities”, MetroStar was contracted to develop an interface that automate HIPAA Disclosure Tracking in compliance HL7.

Services

  • Database Harmonization
  • Database Upgrades and Migration
  • Enterprise Modernization
  • Scalable Web Architecture
  • Data Analysis
  • Cybersecurity
  • Collaboration
  • HL7 Integration Services

Solution

The HIPAA Act was passed in 1996 to not only ensure the continuity of health insurance coverage for Americans, but more specifically to regulate the use and disclosure of Protected Health Information (PHI) under the HIPAA Privacy Rule. In order for providers to disclose PHI, a series of decisions have to be made regarding the type of disclosure, the party PHI is being disclosed to, the method of disclosure and the way the disclosure is being tracked. Without automation, this process could be very cumbersome and time consuming, and could cause potential delays to patients whose care depended on the expedited transfer of records.

MetroStar’s team developed an automated workflow that walked providers through HIPAA disclosure regulations, enabling them to make educated and compliant decisions around the release of PHI. In a matter of minutes, providers were able to determine the type of disclosure (complete medical record, test results, etc.), who the records were being disclosed to (with the ability to set alerts, reminders, and customized disclosure types), a protocol to document complaints in compliance with HIPAA, and ongoing training for the providers’ staff.

The entire solution and workflow was also customized to integrate with an HL7 Admit Discharge Transfer (ADT) system to provide alerts around trigger events which drive messages to the appropriate personnel.